*Foggy* Hello! I have asked my fabulous Followers if they could write a guest blog post for me about their own personal M.E story. This is the first of this campaign. Please read this blog post from Lynne, North Shields, Tyne and Wear, UK .
Being diagnosed with an invisible illness has to be one of the weirdest things that has happened to me and I’ve experienced some weird stuff!
You have all of these symptoms and you feel the pain but all of the tests come back saying you’re fine! The doctors send you home and you move no further forward. After 5 months of going to the GP in tears on a weekly basis, I was eventually referred to the Tropical and Infectious Disease ward at the local hospital. Sat there silently playing a game of “what does this person have?” in my head…I mean who wouldn’t be wondering…. It’s the Tropical and Infectious Disease ward! Then I realised someone will be doing the same to me. You get sent there when the GP has no idea what’s wrong with you. They take about 8 vials of blood and test you for HIV, Hepatitis etc… I mean, I suppose it’s good to know I don’t have any of those things. My poor arm was black and blue from the prodding about trying to find a vein.
Everyone around you becomes a doctor. Telling you to “think positive and ignore the pain” (REALLY!!!) and their sympathy runs out pretty quick! So, I try to avoid being off sick. Sometimes it’s unavoidable. Like when you try to stand up out of bed and drop faster than a brick from a roof, but other times my good friend Tramadol helps me through the day! It’s great stuff for taking the edge off the pain and it took a lot of begging my GP to prescribe it so this stuff is like gold dust! Tramadol sometimes makes being at work entertaining! I am able to function, although when I first started taking it my memory was shocking. I asked one of my colleagues what time she came into work as I hadn’t seen her all day, only to be met with a puzzled face and her telling me I had spoken to her an hour earlier! Oops!
Brain fog….nothing seems to work for this little gem. I recently bought a new car…It’s pink so you’d think I would remember this, but no, I was stood in the car park confused and panicking that someone had stole my car….Nope, I had forgotten that I had a new car! I swear people turn my memory issues against me when they forget to tell me something. I’m looking in your direction Mum! My tolerance to alcohol is non existent now. I was blaming getting older but its a symptom and no lie, I was relieved to find out this wasn’t because I just turned 30!
It’s not all bad though…Even if I am in bed by 9pm every night. I really do believe that if everyone who is struggling with invisible illnesses keep talking, sharing and making people see it’s not our imagination, Maybe something can be done to help us. My illness was brought on by Tonsillitis a year ago.If anyone around me has any sort of Strep infection I literally run away from them. I hope that this can be cured or at least begin getting some sympathy for those of us who are suffering. I doubt anyone truly gets how hard it is to smile daily and power though the pain. No one wants to be sick. I don’t want daily pats on the head or anything, but a little bit of understanding will go a long way.
If anyone reading this is newly diagnosed like myself…Keep going! It takes a while to learn your limits, I often ignore my body and regret it for about 3 days after! We are stronger than we think.