My Chronic Illness Story III

By May 2017, I had taken over a month off work when things started to ease off. It was unbelievable. I felt convinced I would never know what had happened to me; But I was getting better!!!

I went back to work and struggled with fatigue (that I was sure would go once I had gotten used to physical demands of the job again). I met friends and told them of my nightmare, as well as it’s end. I felt that I had wasted too much time being alone. 

So I signed up to online dating.

Fueled in part by being asked if my ex-partner (circa 2014) was still my next of kin in A&E! I had made a mental note then to get an in case of emergency contact that I would love to show up for me.

But after less than a week of feeling nearly ‘normal’, the symptoms came rushing back.

Believing in mind over matter, and feeling anxious again, I threw myself into healthy eating, early bedtimes, restorative Yoga, meditation and long baths (luke warm to stop the blackouts… because that’s normal right?). And I pushed myself.

I was still chatting to a few potential partners online and had organised a few dates over a long weekend. But as I began to feel under the weather, again, I cancelled all but two of them.

One of these dates was with someone who I had looked forward to hearing from everyday. Tarron. We met one evening and I hid my dizziness, palpitations and nausea. That evening I felt safe and comfortable in his presence, considering how scary I felt.

The next week I cancelled a tattoo appointment (really not feeling up to any more pain and worrying about what was happening to me), and gave Tarron a call instead. I was having an okay day and popped over to his to speak about potentially taking a trip together. Everything was easy, relaxed and fun between us. I thought then, maybe I had found what I was looking for.

That evening vertigo hit hard and I worried about how on earth I was going to get home. His living room was spinning and I struggled to behave normally. I held onto him and he made no judgements. He sat down next to me, held my hand as I lay there and told me stories about his life to distract me. I didn’t know what was wrong; I felt embarrassed and backed out of booking our trip until I could find out more.

We had another date planned, but I cancelled that – explaining that I was too ill.

He insisted coming over to mine instead, and we had a takeaway laying on the sofa. For the first time, I spoke honestly about just how unwell I was feeling and the fear that I wasn’t getting better. I didn’t know what I was contending with. I could see in his eyes that he was hopeful I would get over it; Which made me feel both stronger and disappointing all at the same time. 

Being next to him I felt at home, but I also had the growing feeling that I couldn’t handle what was happening to me, work, friends, and a new relationship.

So the next time we got together I told him I thought he should get out whilst he could. Even though I didn’t know what was happening, I was confident he didn’t need it in his life.

I wanted him to wait until I was in a good place to give to a relationship. I told him that if I were him, I would fuck off and hope that in the future things would be different.

And he told me to shut up.

It was right then, laying in bed – worried about the future – that I felt I had found some back-up. Whatever was going on.

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