Counting the years
I was talking to a friend and fellow M.E. sufferer the other day and she mentioned that she’d just passed her 10 year ‘anniversary’. That is, 10 years of being ill. It struck a note with me because I too am heading towards the 10 year mark. I was diagnosed in February 1998 when I was 13 years old. Thank goodness that no-one was able to tell me then that I’d still be here this far down the line. A couple of years in I was informed that the average length of the illness for someone struck down in their teens was 5 years. Harumph. Man, I wish I was average! It was probably only a couple of years ago that I finally came to realise that in all likelihood I’m never going to get rid of this illness. Barring some sort of miracle I’m just going to have to get used to living my life bound by these restrictions.
In some respects I can’t really imagine what it would be like to not be ill! Sure, for the first half of my 23 years I was fine and dandy (ish) but I can’t very well translate that experience of health to today. Being a healthy 8 year old is rather different to being a healthy 23 year old!
When I was diagnosed with M.E., Celine Dion was No 1 with My Heart Will Go On and petrol was a mere 60p a litre! Time flies when you’re having fun! Strangely I remember that my feeling upon being diagnosed was of relief more than anything else. I’d been ill for months beforehand and no-one had been able to tell me what was wrong. Finally I had an answer for my friends, teachers etc. Although in truth, one of the most frustrating things about M.E. is actually the lack of answers available. M.E. raises more questions than you can shake a stick at. Causes? Don’t know. Treatments? Don’t know. Prognosis? Don’t know. Thanks guys, most helpful.
10 years eh? Bah. It’s just a number. Bring on the next 10! Do I sound convincing?
• Visit Ponderings and Ruminations