Hi, my name is Mette and I am the mother of a wonderful girl who now is 22 years old.
My daughter fell ill when she was 13.
I wish someone would have given me the knowledge that I have today, that someone would have normalised my condition 13 years ago and said: “You’ll be fine. We have a support network that will help you get back on your feet.” Instead, I was left alone, left to stumble through an overwhelming amount of advice on what to do when you’re a CFS/ME sufferer. It cost me 13 years of my life and my children missed out on their teenage years. At this conference organised by Catosenteret rehabilitation centre, Anette tells her story. It’s a story that touched many people.
Today Emil is a happy 18-year-old. He is in his last year of upper secondary school and is active in sports, which also includes coaching younger athletes. He has passed his driving licence and found a girlfriend, and as for what we, his parents, say and think, he cares just about as much as he ought to. This hasn’t always been the situation, however.
Our daughter contracted ME when she was only ten years old. We vividly remember the despair we felt as parents; that her life was put on hold for one year; the worst-case scenario that she would become just another number in the queue at the national welfare center; a bedridden teenager hibernating behind blackout curtains in a dark bedroom. Luckily, we managed to find a way out of the nightmare.
The infection came suddenly – like a bolt og lightning out of the blue. The Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, however, came tiptoeing, slowly but surely. It came to take away from me everything you might call an identity. And it succeeded. In the end I was no longer myself. I “was” a fatigue syndrome.