Writer, journalist and blogger…
Laura Chamberlain is a writer who had to give up her career as a journalist when she became ill with ME. She worked for three years in HR journalism (and even won a “best HR journalist newcomer” award). But now, unable to work, she is very slowly writing a novel instead. While she can only write for a maximum of 20 minutes a day, it keeps her sane and is gradually taking her towards fulfilling a life-long dream.
This blog is an attempt to share her experiences of living with chronic illness with the rest of the world. Due to her condition, the posts are not that frequent, but a lot of thought and, crucially, energy, goes into writing them.
Laura also has the following diagnoses and may occasionally blog about them too: Lyme disease, Endometriosis, Fibromyalgia, hypothyroidism, pernicious anemia, Raynaud’s syndrome, hypermobility & a “tendency to POTs”.
Laura will now stop talking about herself in the third-person.
I have suffered from ME since I was 14-years-old, which is over half of my life, however, I spent the first half of my twenties in remisssion. But that didn’t last, and at 25, after a chest infection that just wouldn’t go away, I became chronically ill again. It took a year to be diagnosed with ME again, and it lost me my job, my social life and many of my old dreams. I cover the grief caused by illnesses in my post: Chronic illness and the loss of Self.
However, I generally keep a positive outlook and put my limited energies into spreading awareness of ME/CFS. You can read all my posts on ME here, or check out one of my favourite ME awareness posts: The ME Adventures Comic.
Lyme disease is one of my recent diagnosises but I have probably been living with it for most of my life. In my endless search for answers to why I’m so very ill, I started to find friends with ME who were being diagnosed with Lyme and a few things came up that put it into my mind that I should get tested.
This is the most recent of a long line of conditions I’ve been diagnosed with, but one that answers a lot of questions I didn’t know I had. As a teenager I played down my own symptoms and assumed they were normal, but when the ME and Lyme relapse kicked in it started raging in my body.
A few years into my relapse, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and told all my symptoms were explained by that, despite stressing some very typical Endometriosis symptoms to the doctor. At this point, the condition wasn’t on my radar, but it was picked up almost by accident when I started experiencing pain during sex and was given a laparoscopy (a keyhole surgery used to investigate or treat pelvic conditions) to find out what was going on.
It turned out I have Severe Endometriosis. I have blogged about why I think my Endometriosis took so long to be diagnosed. You can view all my posts on Endometriosis here.