Having M.E at any age is hard but I think the younger you are the harder it feels.
My first bad round of M.E was when I was 18, just at the point in your life when everything is meant to be going your way. You start your gap year, travel, move to University or start that first full time job. Your social life is blossoming as you can head to the pub, dance till the wee hours, go on that first crazy girls holiday and you start to really date. All of those experiences I should have had evaporated before me as I watched my once fit, super active, healthy body crumble before me.
I was meant to be starting my gap year working for Scripture Union in Kinross. I was all moved out and in my new place when I got the worst ear, nose and throat infection of my life. I had to move back in with my Mum and was house bound for months as stairs/walking was next to impossible for me. My social life went from buzzing to none existent and most of those I had once counted as friends suddenly vanished.
It took me 5 years to, what I thought, fully recover and I never expected to be back here again but I guess M.E just missed me. I’m now about to turn an age I didn’t think would come around so quickly and I’m old enough to have surrounded myself with an amazing group of friends. I have a wonderful handful who stuck with me through it all last time and frequently remind me that I can do it all again. l’m also old enough not to give a damn if people don’t want to be my friends anymore just because I’m ill. True friends don’t need your house to be tidy when they pop round. They don’t care if you feed them take away every time you invite them for dinner because you’re too exhausted to cook. They also don’t mind that you cancel on then 3 times in row or phone them last minute to drive you places because your body has given in and you just can’t walk anymore. True friends love you, illness and all and those are the people you need to surround yourself with, as they will play a massive part in your recovery from M.E.
I don’t thank my friends enough for all they do and all the support they provide both physically and mentally. It’s something I should and am going to start doing from now on. So be warned dear friends, the hugs and kisses are coming to find you.