That was one doctor’s off-the-cuff diagnosis as to why my left arm was malfunctioning. I was unable to grip a cup, straighten my fingers, or hold my fist over my head. My layman’s imagination pictured the drunken reveler sleeping it off in some gutter after a night of excess.

But I was also experiencing an inability to lift the right leg when in a prone position. How long had this been going on? Two days.

From the medical building they moved me to emergency and finally to a room on the stroke ward. Stroke got mentioned several times, but the evidence was slim; no slurred speech, no double vision, plus the symptoms were bilateral, left arm, right leg. So other words were considered: Guillain-Barre Syndrome, Multiple Sclerosis, mononeutritis multiplex. The vast machine of medical testing went into operation: vials of blood, CT scan, MRI.  I said no thanks to the spinal tap.

Mononeutritis multiplex is what the records say, not really a diagnosis so much as a description:  an inflammation of  multiple nerves, probably  brought on by an auto-immune reaction to a flu virus.

One day you’re hoisting bags of compost, the next day falling down stairs, legs just gone.

Now a week later, I’m again toting bags of compost. Gratefully, pretty much.



4 responses to “SATURDAY NIGHT PALSY

  1. Hooray you are toting!

  2. RIchard–I hope that you are feeling well and able to easily move all your parts and pieces at will.

  3. Weird, but thankful!!! Keep hoisting the mulch!!!! I’m just trying to keep warm! With love, Joanne

    Joanne Gillis

  4. I wish you nothing but the best. You are an inspiration to me and I am sure many others.

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