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Snapshots of CFIDS
dreams go on when I close my eyes, Every second of the night, I live another
In My Dreams
life I could walk for miles through the city or the surrounding desert. I rode a
spirited pinto horse named Gypsy for hours, sometimes walking all the way back
to the stables after she dumped me off. My arms were so strong I could beat many
guys my age at arm wrestling. The thought still makes me smile. I was tanned and
strong; I loved it.
I cared for three small children. I
carry one on my hip, hold the hand of another while the third put her hand in my
back pocket. They went everywhere with me, as did their gear. I used to joke
that I had become a packhorse.
I enjoyed classes at college. Learning
easy and I enjoyed it immensely.
I could spend hours cleaning my house.
took great pride in having a clean and uncluttered house.
Then something happened. A virus, or
perhaps a toxic
insult, invaded my body.
CFIDS followed. Now, it takes great effort
for me to walk the length of a football field. I must go very slowly, easily
becoming weak, out of breath and wracked with pain. My arms are unable to carry
anything except the lightest of parcels and only for 10 feet or less. I rarely
go anywhere now. Because the concentration required is exhausting, instead of
driving I have to be driven.
My children now clean the house for
Sometimes the clutter is unbelievable and the cleaning is not always done well.
My daughters have places to go and people to see, their lives not limited to
these four walls. It is difficult for me to live in a house in this condition. I
yearn for the peace of an uncluttered home.
I am unable to finish my classes. I
taking one class, then one class with help from the student disability office,
then a tele-course with help from the disability office. In the end I had to
quit; after my last final I went home and collapsed. I was relieved it was over
and devastated with the knowledge I could not go back until a cure or treatment
In this new life, there is only one
where I am able to do what I want, go where
I want and be who I want: In my dreams.
dream of climbing over rocky terrain and hiking through expansive deserts with a
loaded backpack. I jog beside my German Shepherd for hours without needing rest.
In my dreams I clean my house from top to bottom with great relish. I see myself
in cap and gown with a diploma in my hand. In my dreams I am able to ice skate
and ride mountain bikes with my daughters. I dream of a long, leisurely drive
through New England in the fall.
Should someone ask me what I would
do if a
cure or treatment is found, my answer is simple…I’d follow my dreams.