Saturday, November 14, 2009

Book Discoveries

Yay! Just when I think to myself that there can't possibly be another good author out there, I discover that there is. Here are three series I am currently enjoying:
  • The Brother Cadfael mysteries by Ellis Peters
  • Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles: Yes, I have a bloodthirsty side. Okay, maybe not. But I do love Rice's sensual prose and completely unpredictable plots. These stories are truly grandiose.
  • The Horatio Hornblower series by C.S. Forester: My brother introduced me to these. Splendid writing full of nautical terminology that is so artfully used I can pretend I understand it. Humorous and harrowing adventures. A unique characteristic of Forester's storytelling is his pacing - sometimes crawling along through the moments, other times skipping blithely over whole days or even years. If I could start my life over, I think I'd give more careful consideration to becoming a sailor.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Brain Fog

"You seem more alert," said a friend the other day. We hadn't seen each other in over six months. It was the first comment someone had made about my Lyme treatment that actually made sense. People keep telling me how healthy I look, and it's a wonderful compliment, really, but healthy is not how I feel. I've been taking the antibiotics for about a month now and I've been nothing but tired. (Although the predictably low energy is an improvement over the wildly unpredictable crashes I was experiencing more frequently over the last nine months or so.)

Despite the low energy, I've found myself waking up earlier than usual in the mornings, and very motivated to work. It's been puzzling. Previously I could lay in bed for days (or so it felt) and not really care that I wasn't doing anything interesting. Now I try to stay busy, because otherwise I feel bored. Now where did that idea come from? I guess my brain isn't tired anymore. All along I thought it was physical fatigue and pain alone that were sapping my productivity, but now I'm thinking that brain fog was a major culprit.

Brain fog is a symptom of Lyme disease. Up to a few weeks ago, I knew I suffered from it, but didn't think it was severe. Only now that it's lifting do I realize the extent of it. It must have crept in on little cat feet over the years, and I gradually adapted to it. Maybe back when I was a college student, humiliated because I couldn't succeed on tests - maybe that was Lyme disease. Or maybe it didn't start until more recently. At any rate, somewhere along the line thinking started to get more difficult, and I just assumed it was my fault or my problem.

The last few days, I've been getting the same headaches I used to get as a college freshman. It extends from between my shoulder blades, up the back of my neck, and around to my temples. This is nowhere near as severe as a migraine; I'm not complaining about that. It just makes me sad because back then I assumed it was because of studying and not sleeping and stress, and I blamed myself. And maybe it wasn't my fault at all.