So the story begins, I was a junior in high school, sick at home for about a month from what I was told was mono. The illness let up a bit and I resumed my everyday activities, I figured the brain fog and extreme fatigue I felt for weeks after this were just remnants of this bout of mono I had. Unfortunately it never let up, in fact it magnified itself to the point where I was missing days and days of school. Summer came and I moved in with my girlfriend but something was terribly wrong with me. I felt like I had completely lost the mental faculties I previously had, the brain fog was thick and concentration was nearly impossible. I stayed in bed that summer and life moved on.
School resumed, I was a senior but failing miserably. I went to doctors who mistakenly told me I had anxiety disorder simply because they couldn't find anything wrong with me in the tests they ran. I was put on Zoloft and clonazepam but these did nothing but enhance my problems (Common with people who have CFS, medications and other things are significantly enhanced to the point of intolerance) I dropped out of school and tried to get a job to pay for where I was living. The job was even more miserable than school (obviously) and sooner or later I quit and enrolled myself into an alternative school that was in session only 3 hours a day. I was still struggling with simple things like writing papers and such, I felt like I was losing my mind, nobody believed I was sick and the only person I had who believed me in the least was my girlfriend.
I graduated and moved into a new place with my girlfriend and several roommates. I became sort of a wet noodle that nobody wanted to hang out with. I couldn't make it to concerts or even movies so I fell out with a majority of my friends.
Years went by, roommates changed, constantly switching jobs, getting fired for missing too many days and not having a proper excuse and I was at the end of my rope. I was so miserable, I felt like I had nothing left. I was so drained all the time, dealing with anxiety that came from worrying about the unknown force that was eating my life away. My girlfriend and I were constantly arguing about me not being able to keep a job or having a job, it came down to the point where she was basically taking care of me in every sense. I broke down and called a free mental clinic and this was the best thing I ever did.
After months of therapy and drugs not working for what I thought was a rather severe case of anxiety my therapist finally said: "I don't think the majority of your symptoms are caused by anxiety disorder, in fact I think there is something biologically wrong with you." And there it was, my first tip off that I had this disease after 3 years of dealing with it.
I was put on medicaid and soon after seeing a doctor was diagnosed with CFS. I have began to manage it now with a gluten free healthy diet and yoga (not too strenuous but it keeps me active.) I still have my terrible ugly days where my head just feels likes it's in the clouds and I barely have enough energy to make it up the stairs to eat however the "anxiety" is gone. Now all that is left is to fight this disease. We live in a remarkable age of science and medicine and everyday there is hope for a cure. You have to be strong and stand by your convictions, get in the habit of being healthy. You can control this disease but it surely takes effort. Thankfully I've had my girlfriend by me who has supported me every step of the way.
Thank you for reading my story, sorry if it's fragmented, my mind is not in it today. ;) Good luck to you all, we'll beat this.