Wednesday, October 18, 2006
Here comes the sun and I say it's alright...
Well, I feel well. Well reasonably well anyway. I certainly feel one hell of a lot better than I did even a week ago. I appear to have recovered from the setback the antidepressants caused. I even feel like my brain is working a little better than it has in the recent past. I am still trying to decide if I feel capable of accepting the PhD scolarship I have been offered, so that comment is more significant than it might otherwise be. I made it through a whole yoga class on Tuesday night. Admittedly it was less strenuous than usual because of the heat yesterday, but that's still a big achievement.
It's coming around to summer again here in the Southern Hemisphere (we had a 37 degree day last Thursday, so one might argue summer has already arrived), and it's got me wondering, how much is my CFS influenced by seasonal factors (if at all)? I haven't had CFS for all that long, about a year and a half now, and it started after I had glandular fever (mono) last Autumn. It lasted all through the winter and right through to December, and then it started to improve. In fact it improved so dramatically that by about March (early Autumn), I thought I had recovered completely. I was taking dance classes, and planning to take a circus class (swinging trapeze, of course...). I was going to the gym once a week. I was cycling frequently and I even went out rowing once (probably one of the toughest forms of exercise around, in my experience).
Come May, however, after a nasty Canadian flu, I started on the slippery downhill slide once again. You know how it goes, more easily tired, recurring colds, sleep disturbance, muscle fatigue and exercise intolerance, alcohol intolerance, cognitive difficulties, etc, etc...
I've managed to pull out of that downhill spin, and to slowly improve again. I haven't had a cold for a couple of months, I am coping better with work, and am getting our socially a bit.
Lately, I am even beginning to feel my "normal" latent energy sitting inside me, waiting to burst out in some expression (yes, I do actually feel like this sometimes, it's like little fireworks in my chest, waiting to go off). But this latest improvement, which is probably the most dramatic since I relapsed in May, has coincided neatly with the increasingly warm weather. And it's got me wondering, am I going to have another wonderful summer followed by a relapse next winter, or was it all just a coincidence of timing last summer?
I looked up seasonally affective disorder (the neatly named "SAD syndrome", on the off chance that it was a possible explanation. But when I look at the symptoms of that syndrome, they're really nothing like mine, and for the greater part I don't have any changes in mood associated with my worsened symptoms.
Of course, I won't be able to determine whether there in a seasonal influence in my symptoms until at least next winter, but I am interested to know, do any of you have relapsing/remitting patterns that follow the seasons?
Posted by Ellie at 11:20 AM