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Friday, 12 May 2017

M.E Awareness Day | What does it feel like to have Myalgic Encephalomyelitis



"What does it feel like to have M.E?" Is a question that I get asked all too often from a huge amount of people, and if I'm being completely honest, it's an extremely hard one to answer. But, being as today is M.E awareness day I thought that I'd give answering it a go. All I ask of you for the next five minutes is to put yourself into an ME sufferers shoes- not literally, ha, you can borrow mine if you'd like to though- imagine that this is the reality of your daily life. So, brace yourself, you're just about to feel really damn awful, here goes...

So, "what does it feel like to have M.E?" 

Imagine waking up with the full blown flu, to then be told that you've now got to run a marathon- you'd feel absolutely awful and wouldn't be able to physically manage it, right?... 

But, unlike the flu no amount of rest will cure this feeling, it'll be with you day in, day out. You'll now get excruciating pain in your joints, muscles, and nerves, and that very same pain will make sure that you find it difficult to simply move and stand up. Oh, and you know that stomach bug that's doing the rounds? You'll now catch that and just about every other bug going, your immune system is that of a five year olds. Painful, swollen glands along with a sore throat that feels like you're swallowing razor blades is a regular occurrence for you. 

You've now got a crippling headache, everything around you is spinning, and if you dare to stand up everything will go black, your heart will race faster than it ever has before- you wonder how you haven't just fainted. Your brain is so fogged over that you've lost almost all ability to concentrate and form a basic sentence, and you know the best bit? No matter how fatigued you feel you won't be able to sleep at night. Now you'll attempt to do something that requires even the most minuscule amount of energy, and all of the symptoms that you've been suffering with will be made at least 10x worse, and that will last at least a few days. 

Your usual everyday tasks that you carry out without a second thought will now be almost impossible; having a bath/shower will leave you with extremely weak, jelly like muscles, heart palpitations and you'll more than likely faint whilst washing your hair on a regular basis. Brushing your teeth will cause your arm to ache painfully for at least half an hour, and the simple task of climbing the stairs will now feel like you're attempting to climb Mount Everest. You'll now have to rely on others to help you do your hair, cook your dinner etc etc. 


So, if somebody told you that's how you'd feel for the next few months, years or even for the rest of your life- how would you feel about that? Would you be hurt if you received comments such as "you're just being lazy, I think that you need to try harder", or "so you just feel a bit tired, right?". Would you be okay if your friends, or maybe even your family decided that in fact they didn't believe you was ill at all? And last but not least would you be upset if you wasn't able to go on to achieve your dreams of attending university- for example- and you'd have to spend majority of your time housebound, and even bed bound? 

We aren't asking for sympathy, nor for you to understand everything we go through on a daily basis but the one thing that we do ask is that you BELIEVE us and don't judge. A simple text to ask 'how are you feeling today?' or a quick visit when we aren't well enough to go out and do something means the absolute world. Oh, and always remember that social media definitely doesn't show the full story, you may know that we've painted our nails red this week and been out for lunch but a picture never shows the full story. 


I'd also just like to thank everybody for all of your supportive messages and comments regarding my ME awareness blogposts, it means more than you'll ever know to be understood, so thank you!!!

Don't forget that you can find me in all of these places too!






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