Five falls in seven months

United States
December 4, 2012 12:34pm CST
As many of you know, I have multiple sclerosis. I've fallen a number of times-some of which have been quite severe. Last night was no different. Jim wanted to walk to the Dollar General that's over a mile away because it was a nice night. I wasn't sure that I'd be okay, and warned him we'd have to walk slowly coming home. We started out, but he was so intent on smoking, he dropped my hand and was often ahead of me by about 10 feet. And IF he noticed I wasn't by his side, he stopped, obviously annoyed. We finally got there, and I got a quart of oil for the car. I was carrying it and I could feel my right leg giving me more problems. I was walking much more slowly by this point. More than once he had to stop and wait, obviously frustrated at my progress. We were across the street and a half block from where I fell in August when I came upon a section of the sidewalk that had been removed. Scared, I took a step-and fell to my right. I hit a parked car, which was the only thing that stopped me from hitting the street. If Jim hadn't heard me hitting the car, he'd have never known it because he was twenty feet ahead of me! He tried to hold onto me the rest of the way home, but he didn't get that I was badly frightened. By the final block, he was no longer holding me (not in the mood to be pulled along, I let him go), so I very slowly walked down the sidewalk, holding onto the wall. He was already on the porch smoking while I struggled to get up the steps to the porch. Now I'm afraid to go out since I'm usually alone. Justified? Tired of getting cuts and bruises.
8 people like this
13 responses
@inu1711 (5288)
• Romania
4 Dec 12
I'm sorry to hear you have MS. My partner has MS, too. He also walks slowly but I'd never let him alone and walk ahead. He has some problems walking because of his left foot that he can't command to well. We often makes fun of his left leg (in fact he does that mostly), saying that he walks with his leg like paddling. But the most important thing is HE WALKS! He even dares to go hiking in the woods with us. He walks slowly and he has some difficulties when going down the hills, but he doesn't give up. You should do something to walk a bit every day. I think this would improve your state of mind. If Jim doesn't want to be with you when you walk, maybe you can ask a friend or a close relative to accompany you for short walks.
2 people like this
• United States
4 Dec 12
My sister lives in SC-I'm in PA; incidents like last night are why I'm considering moving to be closer. Our parents are gone, or I'd have moved back with them. I moved here two years ago but don't really have close friends here. I take the dog for a walk-or I should say he walks me! On good days, I really don't have problems. The nasty fall I took in August permanently damaged my GOOD knee. But after nearly 14 1/2 years with the MonSter, I feel pretty good. I think I'm at the point where it's winning the war.
2 people like this
@inu1711 (5288)
• Romania
5 Dec 12
Maybe it would be a good idea to move closer to your sister. My partner also walks the dog when I must leave town. He would walk her every day, but she prefers to go out with me when I'm at home, because she's a young and energetic dog and she needs... action. I think they are the perfect match when they walk together. I love to watch them walking together. If your dog is not too energetic and he walks nicely by your side, it's perfect. Usually dogs help they owners make new friends. Haven't you met any other dog owner to go together for a walk with your dogs?
1 person likes this
• United States
6 Dec 12
I'm also looking for information on assisted living facilities. I found a chain of them that are MS-specific; however, they're only in Massachusetts and I don't do that well in extreme cold. Yoda (the dog) pulls-he was never trained to walk on a lead properly and I've asked Jim repeatedly to get him training, but there's never enough money. There's a little toy dog, Roscoe, that has gotten loose twice and takes a walk over to our place. He was loose on Sunday, so we brought him inside to warm up (he was all wet and cold). After he had been at our home for a few hours with no sign of anyone looking for him, we took him on a walk. We had even walked by his home, but no one was out looking for him. Finally after about four hours, we began thinking that they didn't even miss him and we might get to keep him! Roscoe was well-trained and cared for, except that he was horribly underweight-the perfect-sized dog for me! But his owners came and took him, but I told them again that he needs tags, like I told her father three weeks ago when Roscoe came into our neighborhood. Next time, I'm keeping him and getting him properly licensed. I feel that Roscoe came here so I can have a dog that I can physically handle. I have met quite a few dog owners here-this is a dog town! But most of them take their dogs on much longer walks than I'm comfortable with. I used to be able to walk much further, but after the fall where I smashed my kneecap, I can't walk nearly as far as before. It'd be great to have a yard that he could play in-he's VERY energetic and needs to get to play more.
1 person likes this
@bjc66bjc (6745)
• United States
4 Dec 12
hi scorpio, so sorry that happened to you last night,,But I don't intend to sound mean, but Jim and I really don't know who he is to you...But besides that, he is just an awful person to even ask you to walk that far...especially with your MS..I mean thats a long walk for me and I don't even have MS...it just seem like the wrong move.. Now have you walked that distance with him b/4??? because why would you go out at night walking when he is just not the person who will be by your side at all times.. You need to make decisions for yourself because whoever this Jim is does not have your concerns especially when walking, day or night.. Be safe...
1 person likes this
• United States
5 Dec 12
Jim is my fiance. We've walked further, but that was during the day and in much milder weather-that was also before all of these falls. It really isn't a far walk, unless you have gait issues like I do (mostly foot drop). I just didn't think he'd actually WANT to walk that far! I've been doing a lot of thinking lately. My closet family is my sister in SC; she's coming north to visit her in-laws, and we're planning to go see her. I'll speak to her again about my coming south and possibly staying with her until I can either get back on my feet financially, or move into community for people like myself.
1 person likes this
@bjc66bjc (6745)
• United States
5 Dec 12
Oh scorpio, I am so relieved that you did not get upset with my response because that was really not my intentions.. Thanks for understanding what I was try to convey to you. But I think thats a great idea if you go spend some time with our sister until like you said, you get better control of your walking... Have safe week and take care of yourself...
• United States
6 Dec 12
I asked for advice, and that's what you offered. For me to get upset is rather foolish. I think I'm getting more laid back the older I am. I'm also planning to go to a medical supply store that was recommended to me, and investigate some walking aids (an orthotic to help with my foot drop, a cane, and to be assessed to learn how to be more safe walking). It's a big psychological issue for me-I have to admit that I need help, and to accept it.
• United States
5 Dec 12
This isn't the first time that your husband has been a jerk to you. The fact that he is more interested in smoking (which is something that is extremely unhealthy for you to be around given your medical condition) than being by your side shows just how utterly messed up this situation is. Honestly, it may be worth looking at an assisted living facility where you can be comfortable and have the help you need when you need it. I've seen some really good ones. As for your guy... Well, he seems to have already pretty much checked out of your life.
1 person likes this
• United States
6 Dec 12
I don't feel that I'm quite ready for assisted living; I was doing research about it after I read this and saw that they are for folks who are much more disabled than I am. But I have finally admitted that I do have a problem walking, so I'll go to the medical supply store that was recommended to me and be assessed for walking aids. I also spoke to Jim more about how I was feeling. This morning, he was taking it as if I'm going to leave him, but I think now he might start to be understanding. It's been harder for me to admit that I finally need help.
• United States
6 Dec 12
I'm glad that you've done research and considered the option. I've done research for others, and I have come across some that have impressed me--not necessarily for the "rocking chair" sorts. It is good that he is open to listening to you. He does need to realize that you will put your well-being first--even if that means that you have to leave him. If that sinks in with him, he should change his ways.
• United States
7 Dec 12
We'll see if visiting the medical supply store and see what they have to offer and if it could be beneficial. The local assisted living has a rural setting walking path-hardly something that someone like me could benefit from. Thanks for the suggestion!
@cynthiann (18619)
• Jamaica
4 Dec 12
I am so sorry that yhou have MS. My sister has it but went into temission over 20 years ago so I hope that this happens to you too. It is a horrible disease to have. I am t happy that your husband is showing impatience though. This is worrying. It is not as if you can do any better. I also understand your fear of going out alone. This is so understandable. However, it is very important to build up as much muscle tone as you can - even if this means exercising whilst lying or sitting down as this will delay the MS. Many blessings
1 person likes this
• United States
4 Dec 12
I *was* in remission too; I had gone into remission back in 2008, but had a relapse 3 months later. I guess since I moved in 2010 and no longer have access to health care at all, things have just been getting worse for me. I've been under tremendous stress to find a job of some sort that I can physically handle for about seven or eight months-I know stress is the WORST thing for me. I do take the dog on daily walks, though he does a lot of pulling and that does frighten me. Jim won't be able to become my husband (we're engaged), but it seems that he's more about him getting plenty of sleep, or smoking, or trains. I'm just not sure about our future. I'd like to try yoga again. I learned about group of DVDs that is geared for people that must remain seated, or have balance issues. Sounds like something I'd really enjoy.
1 person likes this
• United States
6 Dec 12
No, you weren't being judgmental at all; you were merely sharing what your experience with your sister was. I did speak to Jim more today. His ex-wives were horrible to him, especially the last one. As a result, he's started to tune out anyone who has something unpleasant to tell him. There is a local chain of medical supply stores that have special orthotics for people with multiple sclerosis (I learned of them at a booth at the last MS informational seminar I went to this summer). I told Jim that I need to look into getting one specifically for foot drop (my largest problem); they would be able to also assess my gait, and give me tips on walking safely. I did up my Vitamin D dosage daily; I started taking it at a lower dose, but after speaking with another woman that has MS, I quadrupled it. And I'm looking into a much more balanced diet for the both of us. This time last year, the streets where we lived were quite steep, so I couldn't really walk around. My foot drop has gotten more pronounced in the last few months, so I'm finally admitting I need help-it's the psychological part that's the most difficult.
@carmelanirel (20979)
• United States
5 Dec 12
I don't know who this "Jim" (boyfriend, husband?)is, but that is not right. I suggest you don't go out with anyone who won't be irritated or annoyed with something you have no control over. Is there a friend or neighbor who can sometimes find the time to walk with you when you want to go out?
• United States
5 Dec 12
Jim is my boyfriend. Unfortunately, pretty much everyone around here works, needs assistance to walk themselves, or have young children or pets that could trip me. I don't have friends near here at all-they all live 60+ miles south. I'm going to talk to my sister about moving closer to her-she's in SC.
2 people like this
• United States
6 Dec 12
Oh I can relate to that. Even though my one neighbor doesn't work, she is extremely busy.
@celticeagle (118651)
• Boise, Idaho
4 Dec 12
Sure you are justified in being afraid of falling again. I wonder if it isn't partially psychological. You are fearful of falling so you fall. If you could think of something else, picture yourself getting home okay, then perhaps you wouldn't be so apt to fall. I know, it is easier said than done.
• United States
4 Dec 12
Actually, my ankle twisted in the soft ground. I just hate not having full control of my limbs anymore. I'll admit, part of it is psychological BUT this is typical behavior by him. I need to know that I'll be taken care of-and right now, I don't think it'll happen. I asked him again to move us to a community where the sidewalks are cared for properly. He just looked at me as if I asked for a million dollars in cash.
2 people like this
@celticeagle (118651)
• Boise, Idaho
7 Dec 12
I definitely see your point about him. He should be more considerate of you and your situation. My ex was always way up ahead of me too. He is six foot one inch tall and I am five foot five. It was hard for me to keep up with him on a good day and I don't have MS. We have broken sidewalks here due to so many trees. Alot of men just don't seem to care or take women's needs seriously.
@mzz663 (2775)
• United States
5 Dec 12
Wow! I'm sorry you are going through so much! I wonder if you have a walker or something you can use to assist you in matters like this? I know walking is a good thing for you and it most likely feels great to get outside and walk when the weather permits, maybe there is another way you can enjoy everything you want without having the painful moments. Sounds like Jim isn't much help for these walks, is there someone else that would assist you?
1 person likes this
• United States
7 Dec 12
Actually, I'm planning to look into getting fitted for an orthotic to help my with my foot drop problem as well as learning to use a cane properly. I was trained before when I received physical therapy, but since then, I've injured my "good leg". I don't know that a walker will help-I'm 5'2" and many of the curbs lack cuts or are extremely high or low. I don't know many of my neighbors, and the ones that I'm friendly with work during the day.
@ctryhnny (3463)
• United States
5 Dec 12
OMG that sounds horrible! I don't have MS but woke up one day totally deaf in one ear and 60% in the other. Since then my balance is way off and I do fall every so often. My last fall was about a month ago when I fell over my couch hitting my ribs on the wooden part of it. I have to be very careful when I go out whether I have my new hearing aids in or not. My equilibrium is totally out of whack! Yeah, your justified and you shouldn't go out alone although what help Jim is I don't know which is worse since he didn't even see you fall against the car.
• United States
5 Dec 12
You probably experience some of the same things I do-I made a misstep in the middle of the street and did some weird fancy footwork to stay on my feet! Probably why people think we (MS patients) are drunk-that's how I felt! Do you use a cane when you're out? I was considering one, but now I'm rethinking of getting a motorized scooter. If Jim would hold my hand, I'd feel more confident walking. My shoulders and upper body are really sore now from the impact-if the car hadn't been there, I'm almost positive I'd have fallen into the street and really gotten hurt badly.
1 person likes this
@dorannmwin (36698)
• United States
4 Dec 12
That really stinks that you've been dealing with falls on a pretty frequent basis and it stinks even more that you don't have someone that really listens to you about the concerns that you have with walking a longer distance. Because of the fact that I had an uncle that had MS, I know some of what you are talking about because he dealt with falls on a pretty regular basis up until the time that he was no longer able to walk. What I mostly remember about my uncle is that he had a tendency to always blame his falls on someone or something else. One example that I can think of is that he blamed one fall at my grandmother's house on our dog who had been sleeping under the table.
1 person likes this
• United States
4 Dec 12
I'm not blaming anyone for my falls; I know they're MY fault. What I am upset about is his refusal to admit that there is something wrong. This is the most I've fallen since 2010-back then, I fell in the shower twice (in two weeks) and down an entire flight of stairs two weeks later. Its just frustrating to have someone blame ME for my problems!
1 person likes this
@Hatley (164629)
• Garden Grove, California
4 Dec 12
scorpiobabes I would not put up with Jim's callousness if I were you. where the hell is his heart knowing you have MS and he tromps on ahead like 'you have not any problems at all? not right at all. tell him to shape yp or ship out if he loves you at all. My husband had I been struck by MS would never have left me alone as he knew being an orderly how serious MS is. You need him to really care for you, not his 'damned smokes. sorry bu t this picture just does not look right to me. maybe Jim is a sweetheart but he should have been with you not ahead of you so he could help and prevent you from falling. this worries me for y ou my friend.
1 person likes this
• United States
4 Dec 12
Hatley, even had I had a cane (which is now a distinct possibility), I'd have probably fallen. The sidewalks are horrible here, and I told Jim that I didn't feel safe last night. I'm seeing my sister this weekend and I'm going to have to talk to her about moving closer. This might be worse than Alzheimer's because I can't really control my body anymore. :(
2 people like this
@mariaperalta (19094)
• Mexico
4 Dec 12
sorry to hear that.. at least you didnt go out alone. Try and be careful.
• Mexico
4 Dec 12
we dont want you to hurt yourself anymore.
1 person likes this
@shaggin (37049)
• United States
6 Dec 12
I do remember you writing about your problems walking because of the ms. I am so sorry that you are having to go through this. I think Jim is being pretty rude the way he was treating you. If I were him I would be scared you would be hurt and walk right by your side just as I would a child that you have to worry if they will fall. An adult falling is worse because our bones break so much easier. Maybe you should get a cane or a crutch to help you walk?
• United States
7 Dec 12
I was so upset that he wanted to walk at night, especially since he knows I don't see well. The portion of the sidewalk that was removed and the ground wasn't even; it wasn't even lit! I'm angry that he continued to walk in front of me, even though I had ask him to walk by my side! I have to disagree about broken bones-I broke my right elbow twice as a kid. As an adult, I've taken some pretty hard falls and the worst was when I fell on the broken sidewalk in August. I think I did do permanent damage to my left kneecap though, but we can't afford to have me go to the doctor to have it checked. I'm going to a surgical supply store I learned about last summer-they sell orthotics designed to help with foot drop. I'll also have to learn how to use a cane; I knew once, but now that my good knee (the left one) has been permanently injured, I'll have to see what they can do.
@somupriti (353)
4 Dec 12
I am really sorry to hear this, better you should have always some one accompanied wit you.
• United States
4 Dec 12
I agree, but it's not always possible. If I'm going to be out alone, I try to make sure that there's someone about to help me, and that it's light enough for me to see where I'm walking.