The Significance of Warmth

I have taken for granted the sensation of being warm in my life. It has been so rare and disconcerting. I wasn’t aware of the benefits of being warm. With poor circulation comes a constant coldness, it settles into the bones and makes it much more difficult to handle heat or cold. The temperature has to be just right or it hurts. Then there’s the blueness in my skin that I thought was natural and supposed to be there. It wasn’t a dark blue that would alert me to the issues like is always in my feet but more a lack of redness. Today I am pink and warm.

In fact in the month or so since I have gotten my wheelchair I have been warm. It started about a week after the chair was here. There are some moments where my normal chill is present but those last a few minutes, a reversal of temperature extremes. Today when I saw my doctor we discussed the warmth. Not only was my body temperature normal (98.6!) but the pinkness in my skin has actually changed my complexion in a way. I look alive, instead of like the perpetual goth girl by default. This has excited me, and I must say Sprite enjoys warm hands. She keeps jumping up into my lap to knead and purr at me so I will pet her. At least two times a day more since the warm started. It isn’t just my hands that are warmer, but my arms, the back of my neck, my legs, and even the parts of my feet that aren’t so damaged no amount of circulation could change things.

Of all of the changes in my life since the wheelchair this is the least expected and the one that has brought me the most pleasure. I don’t need the air conditioner on to keep the house cold enough so that I don’t feel like I am burning up. Every year 80 degrees has been enough to make me sweat and extremely uncomfortable. I am still extremely pale but that is the type of skin I have. Without the blueness a lot of my scars aren’t showing, though I do have some sun spots on my hands that show.

The best part of the day was the discussion of activities, because my circulation is improved she approved my idea of trying to swim at least twice a month, instead of once a month. With the water allergy I am a bit worried about a reaction but I found a heated indoor pool, and I also know that showers hurt more than baths so swimming should be okay. Especially since my pain meds have been upped. The visit with my pain clinician was interesting as well. Both doctors mentioned that there is a drastic improvement in my health that is visible.

I feel it. I also have had less seizures, though a bit more Asthma issue comes with going outside. Not only do I get to go swimming once the paratransit is set up (and that is nearly there) but I also get to go for walks, and my doctor instructed me to go out to do something once a month that is not a walk. Things like a movie if I can afford it (there is a twenty five cent movie day at a theatre weekly), the museum, or maybe the mall (okay not the mall). That is for my mental health.

I realized last night that I am enjoying being warm. Once the confusion wore off and I realized this is a good thing, I could relax a bit further. I never fully relax but my body went to sleep more easily because I allowed myself to be warm. Sprite had help keeping me asleep and warm too. We finally have a new cat in our house. Soon I will post a picture of her, but Nymph joined us on Monday afternoon. I have thirty days to decide if she can stay with us but Sprite has only hissed at her twice, once when the little scamp bit her tail and the other when I insisted they share the food bowl.

Nymph is the runt of her litter, a white calico with creamy orange spots and silvery gray streaks over the orange. She looks like she sat in a pile of ashes because her backside down her legs and her tail are all gray. She also has a headshape that reminds me of Yoda. Her eyes are a big golden color and her meow is a tiny squeaky sound. When she makes a murr to call for her family or me and Sprite if she gets lost in the apartment it is very melodic. Almost like a bird trill. She is quiet, curious, and quickly overcoming her timidness.

As you may or may not know Sprite’s full name is actually L’Fee de Esprit or the Fairy Spirit. Nymph’s full name courtesy of a friend’s children is Mystara Moon Nymph. Sprite is playing with the kitten a lot but when she gets tired she hides up on my lap, as Nymph (who is three months old) is too small to jump up here and is afraid of jumping. She has gotten over her fear of the laser pointer, so I know this is a matter of time.

Both Sprite and Nymph bring me warmth and I can finally share with them. The oddest thing about warm hands is that the way things feel is different. Not everything but small things, like the texture of my keyboard keys, Sprite’s fur feels smoother and thicker, and my hands hurt far less. They are still having their normal issues but the joints are less swollen.

This is one of the little things that I am astounded I never knew. I never realized that my circulation issues really did effect me this much, I just thought they made me cold and added to my temperature sensitivities. I wish I had known they were a sign of joint pain and sleep issues but having had a little more sleep because of being warm helped me get over my fatigue from Transport being made of Fail yesterday. (Nothing new, they just treat their consumers like luggage who has nothing better to do than wait around for them).

In a body made up of extremes, I think warmth means maybe I finally found a moment of medium. Now I have to go rescue my wallet from a curious kitten!

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2 Comments

  1. I’m so glad you’re feeling warm and better and a hug from me to Nymph!

  2. What a great thing to happen! Nice one 🙂


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