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So i'm not entirely sure why I'm posting here or what I expect from it, but i've visited this website a few times during this whole mono thing and have found it helpful and I guess i want to join in the discussion...
So guess it's best to give a background prior to when I first got mono back in early July, I'm a 21 year old student and have studied maths for 2 years and would be doing my final year if not for this infection. I'm also a bass player in a band and we would do gigs regularly say 2/3 times a month as well as practice a few times a week, again this has had to be put on hold due to mono (until recently but will discuss that later). Finally I had just met my now ex girlfriend a month before mono and would probably say I was the happiest I've ever been before all this, funny how life can change so quickly I guess. From all that I guess you could say I'm an active person although I wouldn't really call myself that, I'm quite lazy, don't particularly enjoy any exercise and I did like a drink (especially at gigs).
Enough about me as a person anyway I was on a holiday with my family in Spain when I first started to feel abit "down", it didn't feel like anything major at the time I just felt a bit weak and considering my mum had a cold at the time I just assumed I must've picked it up and didn't give it too much thought, although I remember feeling ridiculously drained in the airport waiting for the plane home but considering how late the flight was I didn't think much of it... it's safe to say I'm more then used to that feeling now... Once I was back home I had a huge sleep and still didn't feel right but it was much better then how I felt in that Spanish airport! So again I thought it was my mums cold still and went round my friends house with my then girlfriend and the band for some drinks and I remember not really wanting much to drink at all and when I did drink it felt like my body was rejecting it. It was after this point I was just getting worse and worse, to the point where I felt so ridiculously dizzy I thought I must have vertigo or something as I could barely leave my bed. At the time my family seemed to think I was being lazy or something which at the time ( and still does) seem just maddening, granted they've apologized now and they've since been nothing but supportive but at the time I felt very isolated bar my girlfriend (again more on that later). I decided to go the doctors because it was clear this was more then just an ordinary illness to me. At first I was sent to see a nurse and she did some basic temperature tests and the like and I did have a mild temperature and she said I probably had a nasty bout of flu that was going round at the time and said i'll be fine in no time and sent me on my way... Well a few weeks passed and I was no better so I went back and this time she recommended I do a blood test for various things including glandular fever which confused me at the time because my glands felt fine. I decided to go away to my friend (and singer of the band) holiday home in the lake district to try and chill out about the whole thing, so i literally did the blood test the same day I left to go the lakes and tried my best to chill out but I was just feeling truly awful and felt like I was just a burden to everyone including my then girlfriend, I was also starting to get some pretty bad pains in my upper left stomach area which I later found out was caused by an enlarged spleen which was making me lose my diet a little, which for me is a true sign that i'm ill I absolutely adore food! It was on the second last day when we decided to drive to morecambe for the day, and coincidentally my worse day so far, that my mum rang me to say that I had my blood test results back via letter being told that I had to make an appointment but it wasn't "URGENT", however since they hadn't said what I had and i'm a very anxious person I had a full blown panic attack worrying about what it could be and had to drive back to the holiday home with my girlfriend to calm down. So a day later I drove back home and went to the doctors and was told that I have glandular fever and after telling her about my abdominal pains was recommended for more blood tests to check on my liver and spleen, both of which were apparently "damaged". In a way after hearing this I was relieved just because at least now I knew what was up with me, but equally just as frustrating was knowing that there is no cure for this and I just had to wait it out. How much i regret going that holiday home is unreal. I payed for exerting my body that much. The following weeks and months were (and in a way still are) the most difficult of my life, everything in my life had to come to a halt, my band, university, my social life and even my relationship. It seemed like no-one could really understand just how bad it felt, the insane brain fog where you just feel disconnected from everything and the occasional pains all over the body that made me feel like an old man. At one point I had back pains so bad that the only way I could describe it was if I'd been kicked to death it was just utterly unbearable. I also lost quite a lot of weight too which was worrying but that leveled out thankfully.
The first few months are by far the hardest as i'm sure everyone here knows. I'm better now. Not fully, nowhere near in honesty but compared to the start it is much better. The brain fog is nowhere near as bad nor relentless and the other day I actually felt well enough to attempt to go the studio with my bandmates to record a song, granted I felt terrible throughout most of it (and still do as a consequence) and we still need to go in for another day sometime in the immediate future, but I did it. And i feel like doing that would be literally impossible a few months ago. I also can occasionally go round friends house to relax or play football manager or any other video games (yes i'm a big nerd). Still a long way off being well though. Just yesterday I got results from a recent blood test that my liver is finally not damaged and if i wanted i could start drinking again, although in honesty I'll probably give it a few more months.
I guess at this point I talk about what's helped me to get to this point where I'm definitely on the up, despite right now feeling the worse I have done in a while thanks to the trip to the studio. Well alot of the stuff I'm going to say i got from here or from other websites and the like but guess it's still worth me mentioning. Just to be clear there is no "cure" or miracle fruit or something that will magic you better it still takes time. Well i've started meditating daily, although in reality i'd say it's more so just committing time to just be alone with my thoughts throughout the day and it helps me to not panic alot as I was very bad for that at the start and had many trips to the doctors that ended up with me being a hypochondriac because of it. I have a kale/spinach smoothie (dependant on what's in the house really i'm sure there's other healthy green shakes that would work too) as well as other dietary changes such as just eating a more balanced diet, having a daily vitamin & iron supplement and cutting out caffeine and artificial sugar although i must admit i'm not very good at the latter (i love chocolate too much). I used to drink around 4/5 cups of tea (in true British fashion) prior to mono but now the only hot drink I have is decaff green tea which at first I used to despise but now I can't get it enough of it. It isn't just the fact that it's stupidly healthy it's also great at calming me down and helping with general anxiety which you'll get alot of with mono. All the reasons for dietary changes is because alot of what i'd read online was that basically at this point I don't technically have mono anymore, I have post viral fatigue which for some reason some doctors seem to think doesn't exist? like we're just making up our symptoms without mono being active? Anyway so post viral is basically the same as chronic fatigue syndrome if i'm right although not as long? I wouldn't take my word for it in honestly I'm definitely no expert, just I read that with CFS alot of the symptoms can be relieved dependant on diet, basically cutting out foods that will give you a big rush and therefore a subsequent low e.g. caffeine and artificial sugar hence why i've cut them out my diet as best as i can and i'd definitely say it helps. Also with the smoothies and supplements I guess that was just to help my liver and spleen out although now that they're fine I guess I'm just doing it out of habit I mean it can't hurt can it. And finally I guess a good support structure helps too, despite the initial issues with my family they have been nothing but helpful and for a time so was my now ex. It's just nice to have people be there for you at all times in life especially at the lowest points.
Sorry for the long ramble I've been wanting to post on here in ages and have only just mustered up the courage to do so, so here's 6 months of worries, anxieties and mono symptoms/"solutions".
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