Out of the pits to GlamSticks
I'm Debbie, I've suffered from CFS and Fibromyalgia for five years now and it has got to the stage where I almost constantly need a wheelchair and even going out for a little while in the wheelchair ruins the rest of the day for me and I just sleep.
Anyone who has this terrible debilitating illness will totally relate to my story. I guess the issue is that other people don't. CFS is still misunderstood and as we look well and often make an effort (which we pay for later) when guests are around then we are not really regarded as ill.
I was a fun loving, party attending, social events organiser professional. I was a teacher with many years experience teaching Religion and Philosophy and had many friends and a great social life. Then I got ill. Then I lost my job. Then I lost my friends. Sounds familiar That seems to be a common story for people who suddenly find themselves with a disability or debilitating illness.
It's very difficult to adjust to not being able to walk much anymore or do the things you used to be able to do. I'm still the same intelligent, vibrant person but I find I can't remember things, i suddenly can't spell, I can't read books (I have a library room with many hundreds of books, I love reading, it has been a devastating loss), I mix words up, I can't follow conversations. I prided myself on my achievments and intelligence. I have excellent qualifications and won a scholarship to university now my head hurts when I try to think.
I've been told I'm boring now and I've lost my sense of humour. Someone looked me up on Facebook the other day, a friend I'd lost touch with before my illness. After a week he deleted me as a friend saying I wasn't fun anymore... great, kick someone when they're down....
I feel bad because of the people around me and what they have to go through. My husband married an intelligent fun loving girl now I never go out and cry a lot... he has to do all the housework and phone hospitals etc on my behalf.
I have tried to be optimistic that I will get better but it is hard when I just get worse and worse but I am not a person who just lies down and gives up (although suicidal thoughts have been there at times). I guess being ill makes you think about life in a different way and as I was always doing something in my previous live it was difficult not doing things in this life so I took up different more manageable activities. I got interested in complementary therapies and I am now a Reiki Master and I tried all sorts of arts and crafts, soap making, jewellery making, candle making, painting etc.
It was when I started using an elbow crutch for support on the times I tried to walk that I had an idea. I'm a colourful person, I love clothes, shoes, bags, beautiful things. My wheelchair is covered in diamante. The crutch I had was grey.... that couldn't be! So I accessorised my crutch, it looked beautiful. Then I thought I would have a crutch to suit various outfits then Glam Sticks was born! Glam Sticks are fab and fabulous crutches. Why do disability aids have to be grey and boring I want to look fab! My Glam Stick lets me do that :) I have had so many comments since I have started using them that I decided to start a little business making them to order. This has given me something to live for and also a way to cheer other people up. It may even be a way for me to make a living in a manageable way as at the moment I can't manage a conventional job.
Anyway, this story hasn't got an ending yet, happy or otherwise but at least at the moment I want to see how the story progresses which is progress indeed xxxx