My process of recovery from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is proving to be surprisingly long and convoluted. But I've been on an upswing all summer. Now, mind you, my summers very often go this way. During September I often experience a drop in energy, in mental clarity, in physical wholeness. There is often a bigger drop around November, that can deepen through the winter.
Knowing my own past history makes me a bit sober this time of year. I'd really like to avoid all that this time.
So how do we protect ourselves from CFS crashes?
Nothing is foolproof with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, but I've learned a few things over the years, and I'll be implementing all of them.
As long as there's a sunny patch in my backyard, I will spend half an hour in the sun every day. And I take vitamin D supplements all year long.
Vitamin D seems to be an enormous factor in my ability to keep my balance in the autumn and the winter. It seems to help minimize CFS brain fog, and decrease the vibrating, burning, numbness and tingling of parasthesia. It definitely relieves the orthostatic intolerance, the oxygen starvation and gasping for air.
I will take omega-3 oil every day. It reduces my muscle and joint pain. And omega-3 oil is good for the brain and central nervous system. I need that.
I will maintain my low carb diet which helps me avoid rapid weight gain, brain fog, stomach problems, joint and muscle pain, numbness and tingling, and panic attacks. I'm also taking vitamin B12, probiotics and the adaptogen ashwagandha.
I will continue to have acupuncture once a month from my naturopath Dr. Kelly Upcott. This has kept a rickety right arm and hand functional for writing for some time. After acupuncture, the pain and stiffness dramatically decreases. Through the month it creeps up again. But stick a few needles into me, and I'm good to go.
I will start napping in the afternoon again a couple of times a week, daily if necessary.
For me, some pulling back and deliberate preparation has been necessary in fall and winter. This year may be that way again. If that doesn't happen, and my stability remains, I'll be thrilled. But I try to learn from what I've been through with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and a little strategizing and self-defense can go a long way.
I spent 15 years losing the battle against Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Three years ago, I found treatment that worked for me, and now I am making a comeback.