Introducing ME

Who would I be if i didn’t start things off with a pun? I can’t take complete credit as it was my boyfriend’s idea, but it’s best not to let his head get any bigger.

To get the boring stuff out of the way, I was diagnosed with CFS/ME in June 2018 after a year of suffering with the illness. For people who don’t know what CFS/ME is, it stands for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or Myalgic Encephalomyelitis and is defined by the NHS as a long-term illness with a wide range of symptoms, most commonly extreme tiredness. The definition is as vague as it could possibly be, but seeing as it affects sufferers in such different and unique ways, it is hard to give a precise definition of the illness.

Before I was diagnosed with CFS/ME I was a relatively normal student studying at University. I had a pretty active lifestyle having danced and played sports for my whole life. I have suffered with depression and anxiety for as long as I can remember and found these even harder to manage whilst being diagnosed with CFS/ME, as I suddenly lacked any control over what I was physically able to do. My knowledge of the illness was somewhat lacking, one of my older sisters also suffers from CFS/ME, so although I had watched her battle with the illness for several years, I really didn’t understand what it truly meant to have CFS/ME until I began to notice I also had the symptoms.

I want to emphasise how individuals can be affected in many different ways, so if you think you may be suffering with CFS/ME it is important to not get caught up comparing yourself to other sufferers. For me, CFS/ME affects both my physical and mental wellbeing whereas some sufferers may notice more physical than mental symptoms. I plan to write a post explaining in detail how CFS/ME affects me specifically as I think it will help people to understand the illness better and gain an insight to what is really happening when I say I’m tired or unwell.

My plan for this blog is to be completely selfish and create a space where I can write down exactly what I’m experiencing and recognise patterns in my illness. I also want to share this with people as I feel like there is a huge amount of ignorance towards the illness, not that that is anyone’s fault, it feels as if medical professionals know little about it themselves. I don’t want to completely restrict myself to just writing about illness as I feel like I have many more experiences to write about, but here just seems the perfect place to start as it is the forefront of my life.

I hope you enjoy reading about my life and learn something about CFS/ME, see you next time pals x

Author: Ells Jayne

A 21 year old suffering from CFS/ME whilst studying at university in Brighton. Follow my story as I write about living with an invisible illness whilst studying and trying to launch a career.

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