There, I said it.

I’m ready, ready to be brave, ready to say out loud the reason behind the improvement in my health. You’re assuming I am flirting with hyperbole but don’t. This may not be medal worthy, but I am stepping into zone uncomfortable. Voluntarily. I am scared of conflict, yet I am about to say something controversial, on the internet, where the scary-highly-opinionated-can’t-get-enough-of-conflict people hang out. (You’ve seen the Daily Mail comments section, right? Exactly.) See. Brave. As I say it many of you will know exactly why I didn’t mention it last time, why I hid behind vagueness. You see, it wasn’t ‘somewhere in the mix of treatments’ I was trying that things started to improve for me, it was very much one thing: I did the Lightning Process. There, I said it. It’s possibly one of the most controversial Chronic Fatigue Syndrome treatments out there (and possibly one of the most misunderstood). And I understand the controversy, I really do. CFS patients often have to fight to be taken seriously by the medical profession. They are given limited and often unsatisfactory support with some medical professionals even trying to ‘psychologise’ this very real physical illness. So it’s no wonder that an alternative treatment that uses the mind-body connection triggers such strong emotions. I think the Lightning Process is sometimes misrepresented too, often being described as a positive thinking tool. And to be told thinking positively can fix you is enough to infuriate any patient with a serious physical illness. But this is not what the Lightning Process is – the process is very clear on the physical nature of CFS, and it uses a series of techniques and strategies to influence physical changes in the body. As someone said to me, describing the Lightning Process as positive thinking is like putting a candle on a fish and calling it a birthday cake. Continue reading

Four Holidays and a Funeral

IMG_2442‘Been there, done that, worn out the T-shirt…’ Karen Cripps, Christmas 2013

Well, that born again optimist was not to be trusted. As I was enjoying reconnecting with my good friends, hope and possibility, the bitch payback rudely showed up, and with her usual charm put an instant stop to the party. Apparently, my body needed some time to recover from its most recent black hole adventure. (Honestly, body, enough!) Much of the festive season was spent in bed, listening to meditations and dozing, whilst the sound of laughter and chatting drifted up the stairs. I dipped into the festivities as and when the energy allowed – to get fed if nothing else (and with two foodies in the house, getting fed was definitely worth the effort). I did my best to fix my face to Continue reading

Flip that switch

Simulated view of a black hole in front of the...

Oh, how proud of myself I was: look at me, look at me, I’ve found acceptance, a place so elusive I was starting to doubt its existence, or wondered if it was simply by invite only, for the VIPs of life. But I made it! Me! And I allowed myself an extra serving of smugness for how well I was coping with everything, finding a way to be at peace with the situation, finding a way to hook-up with smiling and laughing each day. But… what’s that saying? Oh yes, pride comes before a big fat fall. Because life, being as hilarious as it is, greeted my newly declared smugness with a laugh so loud it echoed round the apartment, ‘oh yeah, you think you’re calm, relaxed and at peace with everything, let’s see what happens when…’

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