The Impacts of Suffering with Chronic Fatigue

The notion of being in a constant state of tiredness is something that we all just accept. The constant ‘mood’ in adulthood is tired.

We laugh at the irony of how constantly tired we are. We are in competition with each other over how tired we are. We wear it as a weird badge of honour, just as we like to fight over who is the busiest.

But for me, feeling tired is not something I want to compete over.

For me, tiredness is all consuming. It eats into my psyche, a constant presence, which ironically makes my mental energy even more exhausted. When tiredness becomes an extension of your life, it’s fatigue.

Fatigue is an unfortunate symptom of my endometriosis and for me, the worst symptom by far.

I started therapy at the end of last year as a way to cope with all the anger and frustration I felt over my diagnosis. When I was asked what is the one thing I could change about my condition, my answer was to not feel so tired all the damn time.

Pain, I can deal with. I can take tablets to dull the aches. But having such little energy on a daily basis can alter the way you live your life.

I’ve stopped caring as much about things as I used to through lack of energy. I’ve stopped caring as much about the little details, stopped being as spontaneous, stopped taking pride in the work I do and the hobbies I enjoy.

I play a constant game of cat and mouse with my to-do list, always wanting to be one step ahead so that just in case I do get a flare up or a bout of really low energy, things aren’t going to fall apart and things like laundry,  washing up or bills won’t pile up.

I feel guilty when I get tired, adding to the already heavy mental load – thinking that I’m young, full of life and that I need to just push through it.

When I’m not feeling guilty, I’m mourning the life of a care-free twenty-something, mourning all those fun, anecdotal nights out that have never been, because I was too tired to meet up with a friend or go to that cocktail bar in a European city I’m visiting for the first time. I’m not a partier, never have been, but I wish I had the option to be one if I so wished.

As I type this, it’s 8:45 on a Saturday night. I contemplated, like I do most nights, to go to bed at 8, but instead, I’ll settle for 9:30, like I do most nights as this seems like a more reasonable bedtime for a person (maybe a 90-year-old person, not a 24-year-old, but that’s neither here nor there).

My vision is blurred through my tired, watering eyes and I can’t stop yawning as I type. Despite wanting to desperately sleep, I wanted to write this, in the state of uncontrollable tiredness that I feel – to get the frustrations out of my head and onto a (metaphorical) page.

It’s endlessly annoying to be dictated by how little energy I have, to feel like my personality and potential is wasting away. It’s shit to feel like I’m just a lazy slob and even shitter when I guilt myself into thinking that it’s not that bad and people have it far worse than me (I mean some people do, but that doesn’t exactly make my problem go away).

I wish that I could finish this off with a quick fix; a magic wand that granted me unlimited bounds of energy.

This post, though has offered a therapeutic release – words that are now out in the world that stops the mismatched jumble of thoughts filtering through my brain.

Some of the mental weight has been lifted tonight. And with that, I’m going to bed.