Two years on from the worst period in my life, these dark days when I was wondering what was the point of living whilst locked in an immobile body, I will be running in Surrey half marathon on March 9th to raise funds for GAIN.
As I’ve been press-ganged to write up my story, I raided my mum’s diary for the time I was ill and have used this to refresh my memory and write my story.
25th December 2011
I woke up on Christmas morning, looking forward to the day ahead like every year, but with one slight change. I started to feel pins and needles in my hands and feet but I took no notice of this and carried on as normal, having completely no idea of to what was to come! The next day, Boxing Day, was when I started to feel the effects; I struggled to lift a jar of custard!
My GBS started to spread, reaching my legs, arms, wrists, shoulders and neck in just 3 days. I found it difficult to swallow, so I had a feeding tube inserted. I still remember the tube being inserted like it was yesterday; as it made me retch. I also had a catheter inserted, which was very uncomfortable and took some getting used to! I continued to get worse over the next few days.
2nd January 2012
The GBS spread to my face, giving me a botox-like look! This caused problems as I am deaf as well as all my family; hence we rely on lip reading and sign language. The fact I wasn’t able to move my mouth or hands left me very frustrated, unable to hold a conversation. To make matters worse, I was struggling to have a good night’s sleep as I was unable top move to a more comfortable position, stuck to only one place all night long. I started to feel depressed.
Over the next few days I made some very minimal improvements, being able to move my left arm a bit more, but I was in a lot of pain and I had to be given some morphine. I still had to rely on my family to scratch wherever I was itching.
20th to 29th January
My mobility was starting to improve again. My left hand was improving faster than my right hand, ironically due to using the TV remote control.
One of my friends, Molly, decided to raise money for the GBS support group by doing a 10k run. This really touched me as she is not sporty at all. I could see I was getting better, this meant my sense of humour returned with a vengeance, and I took joy in winding up my parents and sisters, who visited me every single day.
February to March
I came out the other side of my GBS nightmare stronger with massive help from parents and two sisters who were there every single day, supporting and loving me. My friends, who travelled from all over the country, visited me regularly. I believe I would not have recovered as quickly as I did without them putting me in a good frame of mind.
Now I am back to my “old self” if not better! I would like to show my support for the GBS support group, along with Molly and my sister Tamara, by raising money. We will be running in the Surrey Half Marathon this coming March 9th.