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7 Ways Fatigue Severely Impacts My Daily Life

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I realized the other day that I was in denial about fatigue. Because I haven’t been diagnosed with a specific illness that definitively has fatigue as a factor, like chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis, multiple sclerosis, or fibromyalgia, my mind did not name what I experience as fatigue.

Yet it is fatigue. Textbook fatigue, actually. Reading through some literature and articles about fatigue cemented this for me, and I thought I’d share some of the ways fatigue severely impacts my daily life.

1. It can take me forever to even just get up from the couch. I usually need help. My legs feel like they are weighted down, under water and in pain. My chest is heavy. My muscles feel like they can’t work properly. Just walking 10 steps to the kitchen or bathroom can take me ages, and at times, it is truly impossible without help from another person or my coffee table a walker

2. Once I get to my kitchen or bathroom, sometimes I become stuck there. During my worst fatigue months, I became stuck on the floor in my bathroom for hours. I had knelt down to pick up my toothpaste that I dropped. I was so physically and mentally exhausted just from bending and squatting over to get it that I had to topple onto the floor, and then I could not get back up.

3. The cleanliness of my house is very affected by my fatigue. It’s truly impossible for me to stay on top of it. Partly due to my severe, chronic pain, partly due to the fatigue.

4. This may sound illogical, but I am often too exhausted and fatigued to sleep. My body is exhausted to the point it can’t move, my mind is worn out, my pain is extreme, and all of it combined makes sleep a very rare thing for me. Which only makes everything worse.

5. My social life is affected. I can only accept one or two small get-togethers in one month, during a good month. The amount of pacing I need to do because of my pain and fatigue is extreme. Thankfully, texting and social media help me remain close with my friends even though I rarely see them.

6. My romantic relationship is affected. When just moving is painful and slothlike, it’s not conducive to romance.


7. My brain gets very affected. The more fatigued I am, the worse it is. I have periods of time where I lose my short term memory. All of it. I have a six-month period of my life that I do not remember and during that period of time, I couldn’t even remember something that happened the day before. When my health worsens, my fatigue worsens and then my memory goes from being eidetic to being deeply impaired. It’s difficult to go from having a photographic memory to not being able to remember that you went somewhere, said something, did something. My brain also gets very sluggish and it becomes harder to speak, think, read and concentrate. I love reading books, I was the poster child book worm,  but I have not been able to read a book for years. I used to read 20 to 30 books a month.

So, essentially, fatigue affects my entire life. My fatigue never goes away, but it does have varying levels of severity that are in line with what my kidney disease is doing and what my immune system and inflammation are doing. When they worsen my fatigue worsens.

What causes your fatigue to worsen? Is yours always constant or does it go up and down like mine? I’d love to hear from you!

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Lead photo courtesy of Pexels

Originally published: September 17, 2017
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