You know that feeling when you are hungover feeling achy, tired, nauseas and dizzy? Imagine feeling like this except you haven’t been drinking the night before, you have a medical condition which makes you feel too exhausted to go shopping without resting at the front of the shop, you can’t do scenic walks for the fear that you may not be able to walk back home due to exhaustion. I used to experience this everyday.

I have Myalgic Encephalopathy (ME)/ Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), a condition I can’t even pronounce! Today is International ME/CFS Awareness Day (12th May), last year I was too ashamed of my condition to explain it to people as I was in denial of being considered disabled and I was hurt by the insulting representation of my condition in the media, swaying people to think I have a yuppies disease. I have now grasped my condition, accepting that my body has limitations and through this I have gotten better. The help of Graded Exercise Therapy, involving analysing my routine so I don’t have “boom” and “bust” sessions during the day with my energy, has significantly improved my fatigue over the last six months. I rarely now feel the unpleasantness of  ME.

My condition varies with its symptoms depending on factors in my life such as lack  of sleep and stress. I have triggers which will essentially set off fatigue, mine is travelling as I find it quite stressful. I have had periods of exhaustion  where I have had to stay in bed for days to recover, as well having to nap everyday. Occasionally I am too exhausted to even digest my food, so it comes back up.

Some Symptoms:

  • Fatigue
  • Cognitive dysfunction (clumsiness, dizziness, poor memory, concentration problems)
  • Muscle symptoms (spasms, pain)
  • Emotional symptoms (mood swings, depression)
  • Impairment in the immune system (raised lymph nodes)
  • Sleep disturbances
  • IBS
  • Vomiting

How do you get it?

Personally health professionals believe that due to a serious contraction of glandular fever and cytomegalovirus, my body was exhausted by the viruses, now causing me to be easily fatigued. Although post viral fatigue is not always the cause of this condition. This makes research in this area quite difficult, not knowing what area of the body or mind to concentrate the help on.

Sufferers of this condition have different experiences, symptoms and triggers; they all deserve the care and understanding of their condition to help their well-being and improvement. There is no known cure at the moment, so understanding can often be more appreciated than help.


How does make-up come in to it?

Make-up helps my confidence when I am having a low day with my condition whether be it frustration over it or fatigue, it helps me feel normal. I am able to cover up tired eyes and tired skin. Somehow looking good (in my eyes!) makes me feel better physically, helping me have more of a positive frame of mind improving my symptoms. It also serves as a non strenuous hobby, which is somewhat addictive!

I hope this has given you an insight into my condition, raising an awareness for all the brave suffers out there.


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