I’m so grateful to have had the opportunity to do this
You’ve got post viral fatigue syndrome, you’ll just be a bit tired for a couple of months then you’ll be fine, do some regular exercise if you feel tired. “ Those few ambitious words from my clueless GP were just the beginning…
Before that moment, I was a just a normal 24 year old who worked hard and had a bit of a soft spot for extreme sports & social events. Everything was just falling into place; I had a great job in where I had just been promoted, the perfect flat in central London, I was captain of my ladies Adventure Racing Team (expected to qualify for the world championships) and had started running the company rock climbing club amongst other things.
But having been used to continuously juggling lots of commitments most of my life, I suddenly felt swamped as deadlines for everything coincided at once and I picked up Glandular fever (however I didn’t know this until 9 months afterwards as the doctors didn’t pick it up at the time).
At first I just ploughed through it and got on with things, as I had always done, but soon began to realise that there was something more serious going on when I found not only was I unable to train, but I was even struggling to walk short distances.
Everything from then on had to be measured in terms of distance, the distance from my front door to the bus, the distance from the bus to work, the distance from the lift to my desk. Four months later (when I’d used up all my sick days and holiday), I couldn’t get to work at all. Then it became a question of the distance from my bed to the kitchen, and after getting a drink whether I would have the energy to drink it, let alone even carry it anywhere.
Because of my determined (or stubborn) nature, I struggled on at working from home or from my bed for another 4 months before admitting defeat. I think somehow I persuaded myself that if I was still able to work, I couldn’t really be that ill. But after 8 months of working full time hours from my bed or sofa I crashed completely.
I had slowly watched aspects of my life crumble around me. First I had to give up training and competitions, then social commitments, my London flat, my work, and even contact with my friends as it was hard to speak on the phone or see anyone for longer than 30mins at a time, not to mention that I had had to move down to Exeter where my parents could look after me because I could barely feed myself.
There’s nothing more frightening than knowing there’s something wrong with you that the doctors don’t really understand and/or don’t really want to understand. So, I spent as much time as I was able to researching M.E./CFS online and asking other people I knew who had had it for advice. Eventually, (after a year and a half, and numerous other so called ‘treatments’ and ideas) I found Mickel Therapy. I was amazed how quickly it made a difference – even after reading the book (or having it read to me in my case), I was making a substantial improvement and was back on my feet again. For the first time I was talking to someone whose theory seamed to actually make sense to me. Trevor made me feel completely at ease and I was so reassured that he understood what I was going through and I had complete confidence in his abilities. It made the world of difference speaking to someone who had been through it themselves.
I now have a long year ahead in terms of building up my fitness, confidence and muscle strength, but I have already started getting back on my bike, socialising and have even taken up rock climbing again, all be it in a more relaxed social and non competitive sense, I even went for a run around the block the other day – just because I can! :-). I’m also starting a few hours at work next week which I’m really excited about.
I have to admit, I was doubtful at first about whether MT would work for me (and about the cost while not working), but the life skills that MT has taught me have been absolutely priceless. I feel so much wiser now, not just in getting better, but in every part of life. I’m so grateful to have had the opportunity to do this, as I know many people have not.
I’d like to say a massive thank you to Trevor Gardener, Dr. Mickel and to all the people involved in making this happen.
AC Jan 2010