Sunday, 8 February 2015



Comment ca va?

Don't worry I'm not going to write all this blog in French! However I do seem to be speaking and listening to a lot of French these days.

It's a tough time of year for so many and especially those with a chronic long term illness like M.E. 
I myself have been struggling on many fronts with pain, extreme fatigue and some depression. This is partly as a result of personal difficulties I have been facing but also because winter has taken it's hold with very cold and gloomy days. Spring still seems a long way off.

Whilst I was dealing with my personal problems there was a lot in the media claiming that we are afraid to exercise. Of course there was a backlash against that statement in the M.E. community. At that time I was embroiled in my own difficulties and felt unable to respond. So I'm just now putting together my response in this blog. 

This is a poem I wrote some time ago about my personal reaction when being told that I was too afraid to exercise

You said that I’m afraid 

You said that I`m afraid
To do some exercise
But it`s a choice I`ve made
As I know it`s unwise 

You said that I`m afraid
But you don`t understand
It`s not a world I`ve made
But part of M.E. land 

You said that I should do
A walk most of the days
But it will just lead to
Post exertion malaise 

You said that I`m afraid
And it`s all in my head
More effort should be made
But I could end up dead!
 I could never be excused of being afraid of exercise. I'm a positive person who before becoming ill loved to walk, swim and play tennis. I had a full and active life. Now I have days when it's hard to get out of bed. I'm not lazy and I'm not afraid. I just know that I have to be careful in what I do and so rest and pace my activities. If I push myself too much I risk PEM (post exertional malaise) or even worse a RELAPSE

Here's a clip to the IIME 2010 conference where Dr Cheney makes the comment quoted.
I have learnt over the years how to live with and cope with my illness. I know what my limits are. I know what will make me worse. I have no choice but to and rest and pace. Of course there are times when adrenalin kicks in if we have to face and deal with the difficulties in life, much as I've had to do in recent months. As a result I've seen a decline in my level of health. I would love to put on my hiking boots and go off for a long walk but I can't. No I'm not afraid. I'm just being sensible and know only too well the consequences.
Anyway I'll stop here as even writing a blog has its consequences!
A bientot
From the French Femme