Two nights of cramps: adverse reaction to vaccine

Wednesday night, I woke at 2am with an AGONIZING cramp in my right leg. Just as I was drifting back to sleep, it struck again – worse than any leg cramp I’ve had before. Unlike normal muscular cramps they weren’t abating but intensifying.

Half an hour later, another one, this time in my right leg (which is actually usually a good sign it may not be DVT, which apparently is more likely to hit just one leg). I spent the rest of the night pacing, stretching, heating the legs, which felt vulnerable, sore, prone to a new attack at any moment.

Saw my doctor (great guy) in the morning, he ordered an emergency Doppler Scan (a type of ultrasound that looks at veins) to exclude a vaccination-induced DVT.

Turns out I’m in the clear – it’s just swelling and cramps, an uncommon but less rare (and not life threatening) adverse reaction.

Just bad luck, I guess.

So last night, another night of these TRULY AWFUL cramps, but they felt less severe (or maybe me just better at managing them). Over hydration, magnesium supplement, elevation – I think these helped mitigate the severity somewhat.

But I’ve lost two days of practice with my walking, talking, streams, dressing up as Captain Australia (the homebrand, boofhead superhero) getting ready for the BIG WALK (Brisbane to Melbourne 26.12.21) for The Kids’ Cancer Project.

I actually feel great in a way. I’ve been dealing with some pretty crippling chronic medical issues for five years now, not directly caused by the cancer, but by it’s treatment. Facial spasms and cramps, pain, lumps in the neck (accumulated fluid from underperforming lymph nodes damaged by radiation), thyroid damage, tinnitus (constant ringing in the ears, like ALL THE TIME, which I need mental discipline to zone out), loss of taste, hearing, vision issues, a whole laundry-list of stuff. And before I found my hope, these issues had cascaded, ganged up on me, and were slowly crippling me.

Now ? My reaction is annoyance at losing a couple of days prep.

I like that.

I think it’s a sign of mental health that you can take things in your stride.

Which is good, because I think it offsets the fact that dressing up as a superhero could arguably be taken as a sign that you’ve gone bonkers.


Tomorrow, I’ll go down to the Gold Coast (not walking this time). Even if I still get some cramps tonight and my legs are still wobbly, I’m pretty eager to go ahead as planned. I’ll be visiting some mothers affected by childhood cancer, keeping the details quiet, but they wrote to me when they saw the TV appearances, asking if I could visit their group. I’m humbled and eager – anything I could do to bring even a small bit of light to these people, I want to.

Next week, I’m hoping the posters will finally arrive. It’s been a windy road. They’ll look like this:

It’s been a saga – because I did the layout, and I’m not a professional, so some of the file sizes, resolutions, etc needed fixing, and I asked a designer at the charity to help. The goal being to replicate the design and just fix some of the technical issues. More time lost, then I get this back. Maybe it’s objectively better, I don’t know. (I dislike it a LOT).

Anyway, it really took the wind out of my sails and slowed me down, and when I said I didn’t like it I ended up losing more time going through how necessary the changes were. It was my first bad experience in all this, up until that moment everything was optimism, and hope.

I’m realising I’m no longer built for Corporate Australia, if the borders re-opening don’t allow me to viably re-boot my travel insurance company, I’m going to have to be careful when looking for a job after I get back from THE BIG WALK.

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