Thursday, 14 May 2015

Driving and MS

I realised many years ago that my attitude to driving had seriously changed. The major highways scared me, so many lanes, cars changing position and travelling so fast. I had trouble seeing the me, now, as being the same person who used to travel all across the city, and on all the highways. Okay, I never took the Don Valley, I had some limitations even then.

I guess it's a lucky thing for me that I lived in a small town when my disease worsened, when my anxieties reached a higher level. I understand everything the woman in the attached article is talking about...been there, done that.

I still drive about town, run my errands, and even made it out of town for lunch with my brother. Granted I cancelled twice before I got my nerve up, not having made the trip west since before winter.

The fear comes, as stated in the article, with a slowing of the brain to process information. I have to be alert, pay attention, and I can't deal with new places, new streets. I need to have a driver to go to those new places, as I need the familiar.

It doesn't always help being on comfortable roads, mistakes still happen. Like yesterday. I got the time wrong on my appointment, and didn't notice until I was on my way to pick up my friend. By that time I was already ten minutes late, and my anxiety level high as I hurried to get there.

I pulled up to a red light, stopped (what I admit here I will claim never happened if asked officially), and as the road was clear, moved on through the intersection. It wasn't until I was half way through that I realized it was a red light, not a stop sign. Next time, I'll take the time to call, explain why I'm late. I will never rush like that again as my anxiety level goes up and stops my clear thinking.

The one thing I've learned about this disease is that you have to know yourself, what you can deal with and what you can't. Life will always throw you some curves, and it helps to not over tax yourself on the little things, you never know what's coming round the bend.

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