Tag Archives: CFS/ME

Lyme disease, in Australia?


The Australian Government strictly states that Lyme disease does not exist here.

This is despite over a hundred doctors recently gathering from around the country to discuss this insidious disease and the fact it does exist here and the Government needs to change its stance.

For now, if a GP notes on a patient record ‘Lyme Disease’ they are taken to task and given hell. Treatment is non considered as it doesn’t exist.

Yet I check the symptoms and damn, they’re pretty darn close!

I recently went on a drug, when all others had failed over the last two-and-a-half years, that treats diseases like Lyme and have noticed a small improvement. No more than 4-5% but at least something.

Note for the Australian Government – denying something exists does not make it so. But then they believe this on so many levels, why any different for a disease making thousands of people’s lives miserable? Better for them to be miserable and lose their jobs and futures than admit an error, surely.

An expert in this field was told my symptoms and his response was immediately, “So what bit him?” But no it doesn’t exist!

So now I’m being treated for something that bit me, although we don’t know what, or even if, because tests for Lyme Disease are so inconclusive here as to be useless.

Just like the Australian Government.

Boredom – the real kind


I wrote a short post not long ago titled “What to do all day?”, a veiled reference to my complete and utter boredom.

I did my best to sugarcoat it, to look at it from other points of view and consider the fortunate aspects. But not today.

Today I am just well enough to stay in bed (as per every other bloody day) and watch TV. I hate watching TV.

I do not even have enough energy to continue the final drafting (my seventh or eighth, or maybe the twentieth, I think) of my book. The book I started writing over a year ago to help keep the boredom away. I’ve managed two hundred words or less a day, about ten minutes. The excitement is almost too much for my medication.

Damn, everything is so circular when you are chronically ill. I could easily cure my boredom by walking to the computer room, turning it on and playing a game, yet my illness has left me with not enough energy to get there. For weeks now.

So I sit here and wonder what the hell to do. I honestly have serious thoughts such as, I wonder what it would be like if I cut off my big toe? I mean, would I really miss it? It certainly would keep me occupied for a while!

I could also go to the living room where my poor suffering wife helped me to acquire a games machine. I also have a DVD player and a couple of hundred movies.

But I have no energy to leave the bedroom, and the chronic pain of my Fibromyalgia forbids it. Circular, you see?

Boredom is insidious. I used to never be bored, I always could rely on my brain to keep me occupied. Right now my brain is spinning slightly and too tired to produce any thoughts worthy of consideration. I mean, just take a look at this post!

So there you are. Completely bored out of my brain and no energy to even think my way out of it.

The specialists didn’t tell me about this part of the process, only that it would probably last for the rest of my days.

Great, at least I have something to look forward to!

No more than 500 steps for 2.5 years


For myself, and many of my fellow chronic illness sufferers, not being able to walk more than five hundred steps in a day is normal.

For me I have not done so, without serious repercussions, for the last two and a half years now.

Think about that for a moment.

How many steps is it from your bed to the bathroom and back? To the kitchen? How many trips a day does this allow you?

Yes a shower counts as well, as does walking to the living room to watch television or (if we’re extremely lucky) going outside to sit in the sun.

It is like permanently wearing a restrictive bracelet. If we walk more than 500 steps our pain from the Fibromyalgia expands exponentially. Our dizziness, skin sensitivity, headaches, body pain etc etc etc from ME/CFS increase as well.

It is like being in jail, except an inmate is allowed to walk further in a day.

So, very little exercise. In fact no exercise at all or our symptoms explode, no matter what some old fashioned idiot ‘professionals’ might think. We lump them together with those that say everything we suffer is ‘all in our mind’.

How we wish they could experience our lives for just a week, even a day!

So the next time you think it is a long walk to the shops, or around your garden, think of us who would give anything to do what you are doing, without our pain.

Trying to survive the night


I am not sure if it is my ME, Fibromyalgia or CFS (or something else) but almost every morning now I wake up with a pounding migraine.

For example, until this morning I woke up with what I thought was the worst headache I’ve ever had, again, five nights in a row. In my teens I had migraines that were usually over one eye and pierced through me like a hot poker, but now my entire head pounds with the same intensity.

It usually takes ten hours or so to get rid of them, which is exhausting and quite debilitating. So my routine for the previous five nights was wake up between 1am and 4am with this whole head pounding migraine, try to get to the fridge for the packs of frozen beans (or wake up my poor suffering wife to get them for me), take a rizatriptan and a valium and remain awake and wait for the headache to go. If Infallible back asleep the headache returns to its full-on state. No, I have no idea why.

Sometimes the first dose of tablets kills it, but more often than not it reduces it by perhaps fifty percent leaving me with the choice of another dose or cope.

The rizatriptan only comes in four tablets per script so I am reluctant to take more than one, but sometimes the pain dictates that I have no choice.

I can try to take another valium but although this will help my headache it almost always will put me to sleep as well. When I sleep with the remains of a headache I always wake up with it worse again, most often the migraine has returned. So a bit of Catch 22 there, just for fun.

Last night I woke at 12.30am with the beginnings of a headache, my queue to stay awake until it goes. With CFS staying awake is incredibly counterintuitive but unless I want my headache to become worse, I must. So I stayed awake fighting the headache until about 3am. I then woke at 5am and the beginnings of one was still there so I took a valium. Then the fight to stay awake began, which this time I managed to win until 7.30am when my headache finally went. I was then able to sleep until 9.30am.

All up 5-6 hours sleep, not enough for a normal person let alone one with CFS who fights to stay awake all day.

However it is far better than normal, when I often fail to stay awake and fall asleep for several hours and wake up with a migraine. The frozen beans then come into play as does more medication.

When my chronic illness first began I would have two or three of these headaches per week. Now I am lucky to have one or two mornings without one.

So every night when I go to bed it is with severe trepidation as I know what sort of night I am going to have. The only unknown is how bad will the headache be and can I stop it from becoming a migraine that makes me want to chop my head off.

How did you sleep? Personally I’d prefer to never sleep again.

“Dizzy” – by Tommy Roe


A great song, I used to love it.

Used to.

That is until the inside of my head has impersonated a spinning top for the last nine weeks or so, without stopping for one microsecond.

I’ve had dizziness before with my illnesses (Fibromyalgia, ME and CFS) but it has always just come and gone, sometimes violently. This time it’s a constant whirring, with someone controlling the speed remotely. One moment it is a reasonable one or two out of ten (on the dizziness scale) then suddenly it’s up to seven or eight, with accompanying nausea and a feeling of having absolutely no control, over anything.

It’s a bit like being in a spinning, plummeting airplane. Or at least that is how it feels and how my imagination pictures it to be.

I’ve given up all drugs except my painkillers, which I have also reduced by two thirds in the hope of the dizziness stopping. I thought it was a side effect, as it started when I began a new drug. Now I just have more pain…and dizziness.

Maybe it’s not though, and that scares me more than anything. What if it is here to stay? I’ve barely maintained my sanity for nine weeks, I have no idea how I would survive nine months!! Oh please god no!

So now I hate this song, yet cannot get it out of my head. Much like my dizziness.

Exactly like the flu virus, only completely different


The flu virus changes every year, making it difficult to treat and meaning a different vaccine is needed yearly.

With ME/CFS and Fibromyalgia the treatment changes almost for every person, so different treatments and drugs have to be tried for every person to find one that helps.

And you get better from the flu, you don’t get better from what we have.

So in fact it’s completely different from the flu virus – my bad.

So how do you find a cure for something that affects those who suffer it so differently? There are so many stories of different drugs that ‘gave me my life back’ that it is impossible to engineer one cure for us all.

Of course I hope I am completely wrong.

There is of course one supplement that actually works for over ninety percent of us – cannabis oil. No THC so no high and therefore no possibility of addiction, but because of the word ‘cannabis’ it has more opposition than an Australian Prime Minister.

There is more than thirty years of science that proves it works, has no side affects and is not addictive. Had it been developed by a large pharmaceutical company it would already be on the shelf.

Unfortunately for the pharmaceutical companies they have no money invested in cannabis (to my knowledge) so they help form the ‘against’ argument – no profit, no health.

If I won the lottery I would start a business here in Australia producing cannabis oil and I would pay taxes, making the government a fortune and a few hundred thousand people feel human again.

Why is it so difficult?

If we have trouble describing our illness how can we expect others to understand it?


For my fellow sufferers of Fibromyalgia, ME and CFS we have a unique issue.

To all outward appearances we appear perfectly healthy, and yet, as I have explained in many previous posts, we are anything but.

I will spare regular readers the long list of ailments we suffer from. The main ones for us all are pain all over our body that never quits, dizziness, brain fog and devastating exhaustion.

I think this is enough for people to realise that we cannot be judged by how we appear. And yet many do.

Unfortunately if someone asks what we suffer from we cannot say ME or CFS (at least in my experience). Firstly they have no idea what ME is (say the full name and watch their eyes glaze over) and secondly mention CFS and you risk receiving “oh you’re one of those” looks. Everyone is tired in today’s world, and if you call it exhaustion people have difficulty making the distinction.

Fatigue, exhaustion, aren’t they the same? Well no actually. Fatigue means you are very tired whereas exhaustion for us is not being able to get out of bed, sometimes for days at a time.

Still, it doesn’t quite get through to them.

Fibromyalgia though, well that’s a lovely long and confusing word so it must be important, plus didn’t one of those pop stars cancel a tour because of it? But she’s alright now though isn’t she, so when are you getting better?

Hmmmmm….give us patience.

Telling people there is no cure still doesn’t seem to sink in, because the next time you see them you are usually greeted with, “Hey how are you feeling, any better yet?”

So, what part of ‘no cure’ did you not understand?

Actually, I believe it is our fault that we receive these reactions. If people do not understand them it is the message and the messenger that are failing, in my opinion. Harsh that might be, but I believe we need a simple, easy to understand explanation of our illness or we will never be understood.

Suggestions? Mine is rather simple and to the point.

“I have Fibromyalgia. Basically it means every nerve in my body has decided to tell my brain I am in excruciating pain 24/7, without any reason, and there is no break from this as no-one knows why it happens or how to fix it.”

I know this leaves out many of our symptoms, but I find it gets the message across. If they want more information then go for it, but in the interests of raising awareness for our condition I find it is a great place to start.

If we try to tell them everything they will remember nothing, so baby steps are required.

If you have a better response please, tell me so I can use it!

By the way, as a conversation starter and to add to the credibility of our condition, please visit The Awareness Store and get yourself a Fibromyalgia bracelet or necklace or, if you’re daring enough, a t-shirt! No, I receive no commission or benefits whatsoever, I just think they are a great idea and my wife and I wear their purple bracelet.

It’s a great conversation/awareness starter, and they can be found here.