My love of rain is helping my night tremors.
Before I even realized my body was shaking and vibrating while I sleep, I began using a rain app at night. I absolutely love the sound of water. Droplets on a tin roof, pouring rain on a city street, the delicate pitter-patter against a window, pellets dinging against a car roof… endless options streaming from my phone in the dead of night.
I’ve lived in California for 20 years and have loved the temperate weather. The utter lack of gloom is kind to my MS. Kind to my skin and my eyes and my core body temperature and my symptoms. But every year we practically do rain dances, praying to the water gods that we get at least a couple weeks of solid downpour between November and April. A cry for nature’s gift of life, so needed and so rare. My soul craves something distant. The rolling thunder that is so long and slow you barely notice it at first. Thunderstorms and sudden showers remind me of childhood on the East Coast. They remind me of places that have seasons and the smell of wood-burning fires and leaves.
I miss rain. I dream of thunder.
So I play this app often and I definitely mix it up. My go-to nightly companion that I always come back to is a blend of rain on a tent, plus harbor storm, plus a very light babbling stream underneath. It is my literal equivalent of rain bliss.
I use counterfeit rain sounds to ease the longing. I use long matches to light my candles for that faint smell of sulfur. I maintain a stockpile of wood (when I have a fireplace) and I create fires way beyond any cold LA days.
And as the weeks pass with my rituals of recreation, I have noticed another phenomenon. As my longing fades and my sleep sinks deeper, the tremors and the shaking have also slowed.
It took me too long to realize my body was shaking while I dream. It took me even longer to grasp how my quirky little habits would ease those very tremors. Life with MS is funny. Little connections everywhere and if I sit and wait, they eventually appear. The body and soul seem to always know.
I am so grateful my MS is in a stage where symptoms come and go. I am filled with gratitude that right now the tremors are almost gone. They may come back but until then I sit and I listen and I live.
And I wait for the rain.