work and sleep

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fuz_mind
Posts: 66
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:27 pm

work and sleep

Postby fuz_mind » Thu Mar 15, 2018 7:24 am

just wondering if there are people out there who are able to manage on a full time job (and a very sedentary one) with bad rls

by bad i mean, there are days I go to work with only 2 hrs of sleep

how do you guys manage?

legsbestill
Posts: 465
Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2016 7:22 pm
Location: Dublin Ireland

Re: work and sleep

Postby legsbestill » Thu Mar 15, 2018 8:44 am

Am starting back to work. My hours are fairly flexible. I am finding it immensely difficult. The lack of sleep, the side effects of the drugs, the daytime restlessness all make it very unpleasant but almost as bad is the fact that it is not one that can be easily understood by co-workers. They immediately think of their own insomnia and fail to grasp the realities of life with Rls. I don’t even try to tell people any more.

Polar Bear
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Re: work and sleep

Postby Polar Bear » Thu Mar 15, 2018 9:20 am

This was me ten years ago. My RLS is/was 24/7 and I worked full time as a legal secretary, often going to work not having slept at all - max sleep would have been 3 or 4 fractured hours. Really not fit to be driving. Some days in the office were spent feeling quite removed from the situation.

From a practical aspect I put a coffee table on top of my desk to raise my keyboard and put several boxes one on top of the other to raise my monitor. It was fortunate that I could not be seen by clients and my employer was more than understanding. He presented me with a brochure of office furniture and asked me to choose a suitable chair for myself. It took a lot of convincing to get him to understand that the problem wasn't the chair. (On reflection perhaps he was afraid of a law suit for inadequate equipment).

I tried to break up my work pattern. Sometimes sitting, or standing, or going walkabout in search of something. You always look busy with a couple of folders under your arm. There was also a large desk where files could be spread out and perused while standing. All work colleagues were aware of me having RLS and it was accepted as part of me. RLS was never a problem to anyone else, just to myself.

My plans had been to continue to work past retirement age, working possibly a two day week. Then the financial crisis happened and all staff were reduced to a three day week. Then came the redundancies and I was devastated because I would have been more comfortable financially with the two days employment to add to my retirement pension. I wept buckets for a day and while my husband talked to me.....i.e. have some sense, we aren't going to starve etc. etc. And so I retired, hung up my work suit and heels. After two weeks retirement I realized I was a happy bunny and wouldn't have gone back even just to work a two day week should they have doubled my salary.

fuz_mind - I realize that you may not be in a position to retire and it is just awful trying to cope when you have no option. We have another member who was counting the years/months/days to retirement - it can seem a long way off.

Are your colleagues aware of your condition or do you feel a need to keep your RLS to yourself?
Do you have retirement to look forward to?


I truly spent a long time just putting one foot in front of the other to get to the end of the working day.
Betty
http://www.willis-ekbom.org/about-rls-wed/publications
Opinions presented by Discussion Board Moderators are personal in nature and do not, in any way, represent the opinion of the RLS Foundation

Rustsmith
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Location: Pueblo, Colorado

Re: work and sleep

Postby Rustsmith » Thu Mar 15, 2018 1:26 pm

While I was working, I didn't know that I had RLS but in retrospect I probably had symptoms of moderate level. It was only when I retired and shifted to a more normal lifestyle that my RLS became severe.

While I was working, I did a lot of international travel, so I was chronically jet lagged. I noticed symptoms most when I was on airplanes, which was a lot of the time. But over the years, I developed a number of work arounds during flights. When I was in the office, I would either be at my desk or in meetings. When working at my desk, I found frequent reasons to get up and walk around to visit with others, which was "justified" by my style as an engineering manager. In meetings, I would occasionally get up for coffee or cookies, so it didn't seem out of place to others. As for being sleepy, everyone that I worked with traveled as much as I did, so it was par for the course in our office. Everyone, except for our office admin, was always jet lagged, so being chronically sleepy was something that happened to everyone.

After I retired, I did consulting work for one or two days a week. Once again, I would get up and walk around when I was in the office. But this seemed normal to everyone since my role as a consultant was to act as a mentor to the rest of the engineering department where I worked.

Lastly, I am a runner and while working full time, I would go for half hour to 45 minute runs at lunchtime almost every day. That helped relieve the stress of my job, but also probably helped manage my RLS symptoms and would wake my up for the next few hours until it was time to go home.
Steve

Augmentation Evaluation http://bb.rls.org/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=9005

Opinions presented by Discussion Board Moderators are personal in nature and do not, in any way, represent the opinion of the RLS Foundation, and are not medical advice.

fuz_mind
Posts: 66
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:27 pm

Re: work and sleep

Postby fuz_mind » Thu Mar 15, 2018 2:45 pm

im really thankful for all the sharing :)

i now have a pedal cycle under my desk that i can use IF i am at my desk. most of the time i am stuck elsewhere and the sitting down can be up to 5 hours a stretch..... the pedal cycle does help though although i have gotten a lot of odd looks from my colleague as i pedal while i type reports, reply emails etc but i am beyond caring.

but yes, i am a lot less efficient, spacing out a lot, a number of near car accidents, word finding difficulties.... it's getting rather embarrassing as i coach/supervise the junior colleagues and I'm struggling to find the professional term to use. the fidgeting when I'm seeing clients is just so unprofessional trying to negotiate for flexi hours now but that's a fight on its own

dealing with rls creatively is almost a job in itself!

Polar Bear: i am no where near retirement.... give me another 30-40 years? I have been under a lot of pressure from family and doctor to go part time or quit my job but that's really hard... imagine spending 10 years training as a surgeon and you are suddenly told that your hands are useless now and you can no longer cut... anyway that's how i feel abt my work ....

i have been struggling more with work after a recent hospitalisation which basically sent the legs crazy because no one knew what to do with me. since then the legs have never been quite the same.

Steve: i used to run and work out a lot too... which on hindsight was rls which wasn't diagnosed. i can no longer run now. sadly anything more than 1/2 hour on the treadmill sends my legs crazy, it sounds so silly, on days when i have the conference room to myself, i lock the room and basically stretch

on a side note: when the rls flares up, how long does it take for the legs to calm down? i'm in need of some perspective here :)

ViewsAskew
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Re: work and sleep

Postby ViewsAskew » Fri Mar 16, 2018 7:31 pm

I tried it briefly - I thought I was going to die. OK, a bit of hyperbole, but still. It. Was. So. Hard. And, no way I should have been driving. It wasn't as bad when I was a professor - I only had to be on campus 8 hours (over two days) a week, so could work at home whenever. That gig ended, so I am again faced with that decision. Not sure what I am going to do. I am looking for contract work and/or work I can do from home. Also considering other types of work than what I've done.
Ann - Take what you need, leave the rest

Managing Your RLS

Opinions presented by Discussion Board Moderators are personal in nature and do not, in any way, represent the opinion of the RLS Foundation, and are not medical advice.

fuz_mind
Posts: 66
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:27 pm

Re: work and sleep

Postby fuz_mind » Sat Mar 17, 2018 12:49 pm

ViewsAskew wrote:I tried it briefly - I thought I was going to die. OK, a bit of hyperbole, but still. It. Was. So. Hard. And, no way I should have been driving. It wasn't as bad when I was a professor - I only had to be on campus 8 hours (over two days) a week, so could work at home whenever. That gig ended, so I am again faced with that decision. Not sure what I am going to do. I am looking for contract work and/or work I can do from home. Also considering other types of work than what I've done.


nah I don't think it is a hyerbole..too many times when it feels like i'm going to collapse from the exhaustion or i wish that i can just collapse into a pile in a corner of the room and not wake up for a week or 2...

badnights
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Re: work and sleep

Postby badnights » Fri Mar 23, 2018 5:34 am

just wondering if there are people out there who are able to manage on a full time job (and a very sedentary one) with bad rls

by bad i mean, there are days I go to work with only 2 hrs of sleep

how do you guys manage?
I almost killed myself.

No hyperbole.

Eventually, once I accepted that I was really messed up (took a few years and a lot of damage to my reputation), I listened to my doctor who told me to reduce hours at work and luckily my employer has processes in place to deal with these things so I now have an arrangement whereby I work only 6 hours a day.

That wouldn't have been enough difference a few years ago, but I've improved my symptoms a lot by making dietary changes, so now, it's perfect. If I push it like I did last week and try to act like a normal person, my sleep becomes way more fragmented even if my symptoms don't feel a lot worse. It's a delicate balance and I must never forget that I can send myself over the deep end so easily. (But I do. All the time. I want so badly to be normal.)

I go to work and go to the gym, and that's pretty much it. Doing my taxes, vacuuming, shopping, all of these are major tasks that I have to dredge up the energy for. (But I'm fairly happy. Wierd, huh?)

when the rls flares up, how long does it take for the legs to calm down? i'm in need of some perspective here
Hours if it's bad. The time it takes to walk to the bathroom and back if it's mild. More often hours (or is that what I remember more because it sucks more?).
Beth - Wishing you all restful sleep tonight
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