Learning to breathe
Last updated: November 2021
Learning to breathe It’s been a real struggle for me. As an active person with five sons and a husband, three cats, and a dog to look after as well as working full-time I believe I neglected myself. I started getting panic attacks after my mum died and didn’t even realise anything was wrong.
How it started
I started getting tired and find it hard to do simple things. I believe stress didn’t help. After my mum died my car failed MOT and I just thought that my husband would get me another one, but he didn’t so I was stuck at home not able to go and see my grieving father apart from one day a week when my son took me over.
I started drinking just to have some control over my life. It helped for a while to numb it but the smoking got really bad I was smoking 40 At one point A day.
Now I think about my family was really horrible to me and calling me lazy and just making me feel useless.
I’ve always been a really strong person and never Ill , I just kept going.
Then one by one my sons Flew the nest and I started feeling empty.
On October 6, 2021 I had a really bad panic attack in the middle of the night and couldn’t breathe and hyperventilated and my Husband called the ambulance. They took one look at me and Took me in hospital.
To be told you have a life-changing illness it’s not gonna get any better it’s scary, I have good days and bad days.
I still get scared if I can’t breathe properly but they put me on antidepressants and fingers crossed I haven’t had a panic attack since.
I keep a journal every day just to look back on and see what I’ve achieved and what I haven’t.
I Even missed my son’s wedding in the summer because I wasn’t well enough to travel and I just put it down to panic attacks.
I can’t hoover or mop floors but that’s a weekend job for my husband, who has seemed to have changed. He is no longer the horrible man he was Uncaring,Nasty critical and to be honest I used to go to bed before he came back from work because I couldn’t cope with him.
Don't give up
There’s one thing I’ve learnt I’ve been diagnosed with COPD is don’t give up ever. The first thing I did was give up smoking I’m now eight weeks and to be honest I don’t miss them.
My husband bought me an exercise bike, and I tried to do at least 2 km a day, which isn’t far I know but it just gives me an incentive to get out of bed.
I seem to be allergic to cleaning products, anything with a strong smell gets on my chest so I started wearing a Covid mask or even leaving anything that needed cleaning to the weekend.
I don’t know how long I have but I’m trying to live every day is if it’s my last.
If only it was As simple as ordering a new set of lungs off eBay I’ll be by the way.
I’ve been married since I was 17 and I spent my 60th birthday in hospital with no visitors no cards no presents but it didn’t matter as I came home.
I had another bad attack and had to be took in again but I was only in there for two days I’ve got an infection in one of my lungs due to the fact that my son was coughing and sneezing everywhere.
My neighbour is a retired nurse and she’s been absolutely wonderful.
She cooks meals for us and pops to the shop if I need anything during the week.
My eldest son who still lives with us does the shopping on a Sunday and my husband and son share the cooking during the week because They realise that I’m ill , i’m not being lazy and I need help some days.
Nothing is too much trouble they are looking after me really well, but Sometimes I still feel guilty that I can’t do what I used to.
I’m hopeful that I can continue to be positive as I think that is really important.
This is all new to me I never used to take a tablet even for a headache, now I’m on another course of steroids having eight tablets a day for a week, reducing over three weeks.
I’m also on diazepam for a short time and made a mistake putting eight diazepam on my tray instead of steroids?
Luckily I realised what I done I think I’ve been back in hospital if I had taken all eight.
That’s about it for now it’s 909 I am the weather here is terrible 2°C with the wind blowing off the North Sea and I’m still in bed just for a short while.
I tried to set myself three goals a day. They might be small ones but I get a sense of achievement if I do . Some days I only do too but it doesn’t matter at least I tried.
Thank you for reading this I hope it helps someone who’s going through the same Experience. Apologies for any capital letters I’m speech typing and Don’t always see mistakes.
One thing my puppy rusty Hasn’t left my side he follows me everywhere and sleeps on my bed now as if he knows that he’s got to look after me. He does have a habit of running away with my toast if I’m not looking what I’m doing, but I don’t mind really it makes me laugh.?
Where do you stand with your COPD?