Living with Invisible Illness

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My life and my journey has taken a very different turn over these last few months. Some issues in my professional life as well as some family health concerns have led me here. Back to a place I never thought I would be again.

Living with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, or CFS, is miserable. There is no way to sugarcoat it…no magic words…it just sucks. Everyday is a new adventure in how bad your body feels or how exhausted you are…when on outside you look perfectly fine. People don’t understand…and it turns into the explain game. This can be very isolating..and very depressing. For me, coping with the CFS combined with my PCOS as well as IBS and other undiagnosed stomach issues has really done a number on me. I have had many more bad days than good since the summer but here I stand – ready to fight back.

I’ve lived with this illness for about 10 years. I never had mono or any other condition that would give me this. I have had periods of very high stress. Which is exactly what this summer brought me…and has continued to bring me up until now. I went from losing my job and caring for parents who are not well (and who live an hour away) to taking on two jobs and working 12+ hour days during the week as well as weekends…plus caring for my parents whenever possible. My body shut down. It literally gave me a big middle finger and said no more.

Perhaps I was kidding myself or I just didn’t want to admit it…but this relapse actually began over the summer. I was so tired that I couldn’t function…and no amount of sleep seemed to make that better. I know that CFS never really goes away but I truly believed that mine was cured. Silly, I know, but like it or not it’s back…and now it’s time to figure out how to cope with it in my daily life.

The first step has been to take control of my professional life. It’s not healthy to work almost 70 hours per week. It also isn’t realistic to think anyone could sustain that. So, after struggling for months with a very compromising work schedule, I’ve decided to take a leap of faith to embark upon a career that I set out for almost two years ago. I have begun the process of getting my personal trainer certification! I left one of the more demanding jobs so that I could throw myself full-throttle into this new career venture and, for once, be happy with my job. I am hoping that this lends itself to my feeling better and getting back on track.

Another issue that’s been plaguing me is that I have not been to the gym in a very long time. Very long meaning a few months. This has me extremely concerned. My metabolism is VERY slow and with the lack of exercise lately, I am worried that this will set me back BIG time. While I haven’t weighed myself, I know I have gained a little weight. I can see a difference in how my clothes fit…and I don’t like it. So, I started doing some research. I want to push myself but I don’t want to make a bad situation worse. Turns out there are many workouts that can be done from home that won’t aggravate my symptoms and will still get results! With that, I’ve developed an at-home regimen to help ease my mind and get my body moving. This has included resistance bands and certain bodyweight exercises for strength training and doing run/walks for cardio. It’s not much…but it’s a start.

One step at a time…one day at a time…just keep going! That’s been my mantra and it’s what I hope for anyone that reads this who may be struggling right now. No matter what…I never give up. It can be extremely hard to maintain a positive mindset but I have surrounded myself with some pretty amazing people who help keep me in check. As big of an obstacle and setback as this has been, I know that I’ve seen the light from this tunnel before and I will see it again one day. Push yourself through the darkness and light will come.

Stay strong & stay in the fight 💕

Gina
TheFight2BeFit@gmail.com

Twitter/IG: @finallyfit23
FinallyFit.1stPhorm.com

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One thought on “Living with Invisible Illness

  1. I suffer with CPS, or chronic pain syndrome, so I know exactly what you mean about not giving up. We have been through a lot of stress recently as well, leading me to get off track and gain weight. Now, I have no clothes that really fit except my scrubs that I wear to work. In fact, when I’ve gone grocery shopping on the weekends, I have to wear my scrubs because nothing else fits! Just 3 yrs ago, I had lost 70lbs, but a lot can happen in 3 years, let alone just a few months. I’m trying again, but getting back into a routine has proven difficult, and the lack of exercise over the past few months has allowed my CPS to flare back up, which of course makes it difficult to get up and workout because its so painful to move. But I can’t give up. My life depends on it.

    Thanks for sharing your journey. Its an inspiration to me, and I’m sure many others suffering with chronic illnesses. Keep up the good fight!

    Melissa

    Like

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