My understanding of all the variables that were affecting me during my illness is clearer now that I have my mental focus back along with the long view. One piece that I get now is how much stress I was under in addition to the underlying physical illness that knocked me down (for more info on my version of ME/CFS, check under Further Lessons on the website menu bar). We know that a physically healthy person can be undone by stress. It takes a heavy toll on our biological and nervous systems. When those systems are already ‘on tilt’ and not able to cope with ordinary daily demands as they are with ME/CFS, a heavy load of stress can keep you from recovery. For me, the ME/CFS stress came from every direction – some self inflicted and some imposed by others needs and judgments. It was like a knock out punch when you’re already on your knees.
The only way I was able to recover was to let all the stress go. And to let go of all the stressful things that accompanied it. Of course, I didn’t do this right away. That would have been too easy. Instead I struggled and tried to handle everything for a few rocky, push/crash years before I finally understood how damaging all the stress was in addition to my physical version of ME/CFS.
So today, I make use of my hard won ME/CFS knowledge about stress when I deal with stressors as a healthy person. I do what I CAN do to move my life along and I allow myself some serious slack about all the rest of it – I let things go. How do you deal with the stress as you struggle with ME/CFS? What are your successful strategies? Please COMMENT or Send in your thoughts and I’ll post them. You can use the Contact Form or send an email to Martha at DefeatCFS dot net.
Look for a weekly posting on Tuesdays. And consider being part of the conversation.
Be Well Again,