Posted 8/13/2013 8:37 AM (GMT -6)
I got CFS and fibromyalgia at the beginning of year 12 (last year of school). I struggled through semester one with people (students and teachers) thinking I'm lazy. I only went to school 2-4 half days per week. Near the beginning of semester 2, a doctor wrote a letter saying I needed time off school for the rest of the year - what a relief it was to finally just sleep without stressing about my studies! I went through year 12 part-time the next year. First semester was okay, second sem the family situation became very stressful and my health went WAY downhill again - and so did my marks. Luckily I'd done well enough in first semester that my overall marks got me into uni anyway.
This year I am studying at university to become an Occupational Therapist. For the first few weeks of uni I managed fairly well with a 75% study load and a lower severity of symptoms. But I just kept getting tireder and in more pain and less able to perform well in my assessments. I ended up telling the Counselling and Disability Services office about my chronic illnesses and subsequently getting deferred assessments to do during the semester break. I am now doing semester 2 at 37.5% study load (2 units). I'm still learning to manage this condition - this forum is really helping me to learn to do that. I only joined this forum when I was right near sem 1 exams and stressing out, feeling like the whole world was crashing down around me. The lovely ppl on the fibro forum made me realise that everything will be okay :) I'll get there, just more slowly than others, perhaps. You will get there too!
Could you apply for a disability plan at your college? I have one and it helps SO MUCH!
Check out the spoon theory to use to explain to your friends/peers/teachers about the CFS.
I was very stressed and upset during sem 1 when I thought I wouldn't be able to get through uni or a job - hence no government allowance or income from employment. But it turns out I was able to get a newstart allowance that doesn't require me to work or study - so it's the youth's version of a disability pension :) it relieves stress so much. Have you checked out all the options for government allowances?
It's tough, I know. The last few years have been very full-on for me. But there's always a way through, you just have to look hard for it. I like these words from a song, "God will make a way where there seems to be no way". Good luck in finding your way! :)
Conditions: Fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic pain syndrome, irritable bowel syndrome, food intolerances, complex regional pain syndrome, anxiety, GERD, allergies, dermatitis, low immunity, tinnitus, restless legs syndrome, scoliosis, etc.
Goals: to be an occupational therapist; to explore the world.
"Reach for the moon; even if you miss, you will land among the stars."