Monday, September 20, 2010


Niggle.  This is a GREAT word.  First because niggle rhymes with wiggle and wiggle always makes me giggle. Second because it seems so very British and I think the Brits have a great way with words. I haven’t heard many Americans use this word, have you?  Besides, niggle keeps coming up in my spell check suggesting that I try sniggle instead.  To sniggle is to fish for eels by thrusting a baited hook into their lurking places.  Gross. Let’s move on.  One more and final reason why niggle is a GREAT word is because it is a really good way to describe what many MSers go through on a daily basis.  Well, at least what I am putting myself through every day.  Let me explain. 

According to my sources, the definition of niggle is:  worry unnecessarily or excessively.  To niggle is to be preoccupied with details.  To niggle is to worry, to fret, to fuss. Admittedly, I niggle every day about every little feeling in my body. The burning in my legs, the numbing in my fingers and the blue spots I see with my left eye are all things I niggle about. I find that as I become more aware of my body and its sensations I tend to worry more.  I fret more.  Allow me to share a few highlights of my daily niggling.

“My legs are burning up.  Is this my normal?”  I niggle. “Or, is this another obnoxious relapse?”  I niggle some more.  “Nope, these symptoms are the same that I’ve had for the last few months.  Silly.  It’s just a little warmer outside so the burning is stronger.  After all, it is 100 degrees out there!”  I niggle next about the tingling in my right hand.  “All I did was water the plants this afternoon!  Why does my hand feel so dead?  Am I having a disabling relapse?”  I niggle.  “Your hand has felt like this for the last year”, I remind myself, “It’s just flaring up a wee bit”.  “But what if it never gets better?”  Good grief.  All this niggling!  I always revert back to my greatest source of niggling, my left eye. I announce to my partner, my kitties, my neighbors, whoever is listening, “just to let you know, I am seeing blue lights and my left eye is NOT right today”.  I niggle.  Again with the routine of covering my right eye with my hand and observing what I see with my gimp left eye.  I switch, covering my left eye and observing what I see with my right eye.  I compare notes and I niggle. “Oh brother, I am not seeing things clearly and was that a sharp shooting pain I just felt?  Do I need to call the neuro doc?”  I remind myself that I’ve been through this before and the neuro doc has assured me that my retina will re-adjust.  And so it goes.  Niggle. Repeat. Every. Day. 

Yes, the word niggle is perfect for us MSers but seriously cannot be good for an MSer like me to go through every day.  I am an official MS niggler and ‘tis no good. Aren’t I supposed to eliminate stressors?  

I really should take a break to meditate. 


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