Fatigue is real… real tough… and Happy Belated 4th of July!

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

Isaac Levinsky wants to wish you all a happy 4th of July and 243rd Birthday to our great nation the United States of America!

So I was too busy being sick with a Crohn’s Disease flare-up of fatigue and pain to post yesterday! I super enjoyed the patriotism yesterday, I love our country. Very enjoyable to watch the TV special on PBS and the Macy’s Fireworks along with the presidential speech! But on to my main point below…

I am sure many people out there feel worn down and tired some of the time. Perhaps you even take a nap on the weekends or after a big holiday meal. I want you to think about that feeling and then also remember what it feels like to run a race or climb a mountain, play a game of basketball or go swimming. All these situations lead to some sort of fatigue. In the case of exercise you earned that fatigue because you exerted yourself physically. In the case of taking naps maybe work was stressful or your body is tired from eating and you feel relaxed so you take a nap.

Take a 180 turn and try to understand what UN-earned fatigue involves. I have fatigue for no reason at all except that I have Crohn’s Disease. Yesterday I took a 3 hour nap mid-day after having a full-nights sleep and I still was so tired I had to rest for the whole day. I had not exercised, I was not stressed and nothing else caused it. Fatigue is also unpredictable with auto-immune diseases like Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis and Rheumatoid Arthritis. The problem also is that rest does not help the fatigue improve when it is from my Crohn’s Disease. That is frustrating as really there is not much to be done. There is no medical treatment for chronic illness related fatigue. I did my doctoral research on helping this type of fatigue (wait for another post).

Ultimately, if someone you know has an auto-immune disease like Rheumatoid Arthritis, Multiple Sclerosis, Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, or even any Cancer related fatigue- keep in mind that it is not their fault and napping will not fix the problem. I always find it helpful to have the people in my life try and help me with daily tasks when I feel like I was just in a marathon race. Ultimately, when I do feel better I try not to overdo it!

Today I had almost the same amount of fatigue and abdominal pain so I have tried to keep my mind busy by reading and spending time with my family! Tomorrow is another day and who knows, I might have more energy – either way, I will be as content as possible with how I feel now and be glad it is not worse today – at least I can eat some food and not be in the hospital this week 🙂