These Chronic Fatigue Syndrome ME photographs give an idea of my experience of life lived for 14 years with severe CFS.
CFS = Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (Read an article on What is CFS?)
ME = Myalgic Encephalomyelitis
My name is Katherine Owen (I often use Katherine T Owen as my author name).
Thank you for visiting my website.
When you are living with chronic illness, it's normal not to have a lot of photos taken. Who wants to see a photograph of themselves looking ill?
Mind you, in the case of photographs with people with
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome ME, often their apparently healthy appearance
the level of illness and pain with which they live.
(It's one of the reasons why CFS/ME is sometimes called an Invisible Illness.)
I am glad now that I have a few photos of those years, although I have found it emotionally challenging to put together this article.
These photographs remind me just how difficult life was for so very long.
Now I am walking and talking again, every day feels like a celebration.
But I still live with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome ME and naturally I wish that I didn't.
For many years I had a slice of dry bread left out next to me by a carer (caregiver) the night before. This was my breakfast.
When I got the extra hour of private care in the morning, it allowed me to arrange a carer to feed me breakfast.
Many of the private carers didn't speak much English which was a problem. But they were all truly delightful people.
I wasn't able to feed myself or be propped up for long.
For over a year I ate puree. It was so hard for me to chew and swallow and care time was too tight to allow me a break during the meal.
It was a problem maintaining my weight. In the photograph above I am down to 7 Stone (44 kg).
Severe Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS)
This Chronic Fatigue Syndrome ME photograph is taken of me on Christmas day one year.
I had severe Multiple Chemical Sensitivity and reacted to the paper on the Christmas crackers. The gloves helped to reduce the allergic response.
Out again after 4 years in a room
After discovering that along with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome ME I
also had Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) I cut out everyday domestic
chemicals and became well enough to transfer into a wheelchair 4 times a
Two of the trips allowed me to leave the house and return. I would go out into the garden or sit in an old car at the front of the house. See below.
For the following 7 years (until the dramatic improvement in 2008) my world was considerably
Move from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome ME Photos to the home page on CFS and Alternative Healing Therapy.