"All of you are beautiful, strong people. You got this. WE got this!"

 
Emma Taylor

“This isn't your fault, you're not a failure, cut yourself some slack, allow yourself to rest and heal, practice self-care and manage who you give your energy and time to. Again, this isn't your fault.” 

 

Read the story of a singer and a young warrior battling ME and Fibromyalgia!

Emma Taylor's Story

 

 

When did you get diagnosed with chronic illness and how did it impact your life?
I started feeling very unwell in 2014, multiple throat infections, always getting the flu and feeling very run down. I went to several specialists, and they had no idea what was wrong with me! By 2016, my Mum had her own health problems and was seeing a Rheumatologist. I went to see him and was diagnosed with ME & Fibromyalgia. Sadly, he wasn't much help and left me to get on with it on my own. After months of doing my own research & connecting with other patients, I slowly began to understand what was happening to me. It was terrifying. I was declining very fast. Prior to becoming ill, I was getting trained in martial art, working, studying to become a therapist, seeing friends on weekends and was fairly active. Fast forward to now, I am mostly house-bound. While unable to go out on my own due to weakness, I have not been to a busy area like a restaurant for a year. I battle with daily pain, severe fatigue, crippling and scary neurological symptoms like twitches, inner tremors, dizziness, sensory overload, like my body is buzzing. I also have daily palpitations, vision problems. I struggle to prepare my own meals. It has completely changed my life.

 

How has your journey been so far dealing with it and what are your learnings from that?
Dealing with any chronic illness or any major life change is very challenging. I suffered from depression prior to my illness, and my mental health has definitely taken a hit. I miss my long walks, my singing, seeing friends and living my life. I have forgotten what it feels like to feel well. However, I do a lot of meditation now and follow Buddhism. I try to remind myself to stay in the present and let go of the past. The past is gone, and the present is all we have. The future is uncertain. I am training my mind to be grateful for things I do have such as an amazing and wonderful mother, a lovely home, lovely dogs and friends all across the globe who show me love and support. There are many people a lot worse off than me, so I try to remain grateful and
humble and let go of anger. I am mourning the girl I used to be, but she's still inside me. Currently, my focus is to try my best to improve my condition and return back to the world I once knew. An important thing to remind anyone with a chronic illness is:

“This isn't your fault, you're not a failure, cut yourself some slack, allow yourself to rest and heal, practice self-care and manage who you give your energy and time to. Again, this isn't your fault.” 

How do you manage to balance your work and personal space with chronic pain?
I'm unable to work at all at the moment! I am hoping to get back to my studies and work in the future. 

 

What do you do to keep yourself positive through this journey and how do you spread your positivity to others?
I try to write song lyrics and work on new song ideas when I am able to. I also try to be creative with short comic sketches. I’m creating a meditation space, spending time with my dogs as they are getting older now and trying to give myself some form of structure at home. Being positive can be really hard. I'm not going to lie; some days I find myself in a dark hole of depression questioning my existence and my thoughts can take a dark turn, but as I mentioned earlier, I really do try to hold onto hope and try and live in the present. Dealing with the present is equally difficult; people may want to escape it or avoid what's happening
to them which is perfectly understandable. I just urge people to allow themselves to rest and self-care and not to push themselves over their limits because that can cause them more pain and damage. Chronic illness can be very isolating but reaching out to people on social media and connecting with other patients can make this journey less lonely. I always try to tell others not to give up, to keep being the beautiful warrior you are and that things will get better.

Just hold on. Things will get better. 

 

Your message to other people battling chronic illnesses

You may feel like you are not your old self anymore, but you're still you. You may feel angry, sad, lost, afraid, but you are never alone. I am always here, and others in the chronic illness community are here for you too. You got this. You're a warrior. Hang on. All of you are beautiful, strong people. You got this. WE got this.

 

 

Before

After

Connect with Emma Taylor  at:

Twitter - http://twitter.com/

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