“Laziness is nothing but the habit of resting before you get tired.”-Jules Renard
This method would not have worked when I was still employed full time in America and, moreover, doing the swing shift, which kept me up five days a week till at least 11 o’clock at night.
In fact, fatigue was my number one problem with multiple sclerosis at that time in the sense that it directly affected my ability to function in the working world and continue to make a living. For this reason, I sought medication from my neurologist, who first prescribed Provigil, and then Nuvigil. Both are stimulant-like drugs used to improve wakefulness.
I did not find Provigil to be very effective, but Nuvigil, as it turned out, did the job quite well. Interestingly, as my doctor relayed, this drug was used by combat troops in Iraq to keep them awake and aware while on guard duty. Since I myself was fighting my own war with MS, this seemed pretty appropriate.
I did find that I would occasionally develop a mild headache with the drug, but I counted this as a reasonable tradeoff for the risk of falling asleep at my desk while I was supposed to be working. I also noticed when my shift was over; I had no problem with sleeping through the ensuing night hours. In other words, the drug did not have negative side effects making me feel wired or restless.
Were the medication available in Indonesia, I would certainly continue to take it on an as needed basis – for even retirement can be a busy life, sometimes. Unfortunately, however, it, as well as most other common MS drugs, is not available where I live, for the disease is exceedingly rare in Indonesia. I also know of others that insurance will not cover Nuvigil. Therefore I, along with other fatigue sufferers, am stuck with taking the advice of Renard.
I rest before I get tired.
Have you tried Nuvigil or Provigil? Did you experience side effects from the drugs? How do you handle fatigue?
Richard was raised in Portland, Oregon and diagnosed with MS in 2007. Within 3 years, he decided to retire early, at 55, and move to Bali with his wife, who is originally Indonesian. From there, he continues to write about experiences with MS as well as his various adventures on the island.