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ME/CFS: In Free Fall Through the Looking Glass
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Losing interest in everything

Discussion in 'Lifestyle Management' started by river, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. river

    river

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    This is a bad moment and I don't know why
    My legs are always sore, my brain fog is stronger than ever, my breath is short and my memory is plain broken. But there's something new. I would usually struggle to do things I like, even if just for a little, from simplest things like having a phone convo, listening to music or watching a documentary to more complex ones like studying, playing the piano, drawing to even more physical ones when I'd feel better like fixing things, cooking, doing chores. I often didn't have enough energy to do them for long but I wanted to do them.

    Suddenly I lost all interest in my hobbies and interests. The idea of listening to music or watching a documentary or doing chores just doesn't appeal to me and I feel like I can find any pleasure in anything. On the other hand I'm so achy and sore I can't leave the bedroom for long but I don't even feel like sleeping. I woke up at 4 am and couldn't sleep since then. Today I will be dead sleepy by 9 pm and will sleep till 4 am and the cycle will begin again but I don't know what to with my time.

    The only thing I find pleasurable is having a conversation with my friend. I have a friend who is extremely not demanding or oppressive. I mean while certain guests feels like a burden because they always ask you questions, they expect you to talk all the time or offer them things or don't feel very autonomous at other people houses, this friend is very in tune with my health issue in fact she is not a tedious presence. She talks only when I feel like it but stops when she sees I can't go on and just sits there, starting to talk about something interesting again only when she sees I have recovered and even when she sits there saying nothing I feel less lonely. Sometimes I feel like napping and instead of taking offence or feeling let alone she just sits there on the edge of the bed, doing something at the pc or listening to my cds and her presence is so conforting even if I don't talk or nap.

    Maybe I'm getting dependent on this comforting feeling but the only thing I really feel like doing is spending time with her, talking or listening to music. But of course she has other commitments and can't be here all the time.

    Anyway, do you ever feel like you're losing interest in everything, even those things you consider strong passions and usually make you want to be healthier to be able to do them? Does this happen expecially when you feel physically worse than usual and what do you do all day when you're in such condition?
  2. Valb626

    Valb626

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    Aw, river, this "losing interest in everything" business is one of the classic symptoms/hallmarks of depression. I know it well.

    Most of the non-pharmacological options for dealing with it aren't sensible for PWCs, e.g., brisk walks in the fall sunshine. I'm sure there will be lots of folks who disagree or have other experiences, but I do well on lexapro and it kicks in w/in about 3 days of starting to take it. Everyone's bodies are different. Time under a SAD light helps me, too. If you're in the northern hemisphere, this might be a partial reaction to the loss of light at this time of year and time under a SAD light might be enough to kick-start you again.

    Hate it. Creeping and pernicious.
  3. caledonia

    caledonia

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    Cincinnati, OH, USA
    The short answer is yes. The worse I feel, the less I feel like doing something more complex like my hobby. When I'm like that, I just do the bare minimum, feed myself, watch some mindless tv, sleep, or whatever until my energy/enthusiasm/concentration come back enough for my hobby. In the past, it's been as long as a few weeks, but I'm feeling good enough consistently now, that it might only be days or part of a day.

    Since I have a vivid imagination, often I spend time laying down imagining over and over what my next step will be with my hobby. Then once I can get to it, I know exactly what I'm going to do.

    Anyway, it's a good thing to keep in mind that this illness has ups and downs, and you will feel better again at some point and be able to do something more complex and interesting.

    Also, in Western society, people often feel useless unless they're "doing" something every minute of the day. This is simply not true, and is a "rule" we should discard and not feel guilty about if we're sick. "Being" is just as important as "doing".

    You can also do things like meditation or prayer during your down time. A lot of times I do EFT (emotional freedom technique). Instead of physically tapping on the meridian points, I just imagine myself doing it, and it works just as well.

    I'm glad that you have such a good friend; you're very lucky!
  4. river

    river

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    Europe here, now that i think about it, this summer i would lay on a sunbed in the terrace and get some sun from 3 pm to 5 pm
    I actually didn't feel bored or anything and loved the feeling. And actually I felt better this summer health wise. We had a good weather till first days of octobers
    then suddenly a freezing cold weather, storms and lot of fogs. Average temperature for this summer was 87 degree. Average temperature for september was 75 degree. The average temperature now is 48. I'm wearing two pairs of socks and using two thick blanked. Also I'm using the artificial light from morning to bedtime because it's too dark and cloudy. Also, this week the daylight saving time will change again and this always makes me feel worse for some reason.

    If it's indeed the bad weather, lack of sun and the fact that my hands and feet are always freezing cold, what can I do to feel better?
  5. ggingues

    ggingues $10 gift code at iHerb GAS343 of $40

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    There is some kind of light that people can use if they suffer from SAD. Perhaps you can Google it or some other search engine.
  6. dannybex

    dannybex Senior Member

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    Hi River,

    Two things you might consider trying...the first one would be vitamin D supplementation, especially since you felt better during the sunnier months. Here's a study that showed it to be more helpful than light therapy:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10888476

    The other is the supplement SAM-e. It can be helpful not only for depression, but also liver function, joint and muscle health, and energy. I don't take it every day, but if I stop for more than a week or so...I'll notice a definite downturn. It can make some people kind of manic or anxious, but IMHO, it's worth a try. You'll know if it's helping or not within a week.

    d.
  7. lucy

    lucy Senior Member

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    I had the same this summer. For two months no drawing, not doing anything I did before, just watching movies. I watched 7 seasons of star trek during these two months. I stopped watching films I used to before, I love experimental films, art-films . I am not sure if it is some kind of depression, for me it was more like vegetable state, I wasn't sad, I was emotionless. Even if I tried to do some creative work, it was as if the creativity was gone, childish results. And I really felt good if I kept doing nothing, it felt safe. Maybe it is some mild form of activated autism (I am sorry, I do not know very well if it fits anyhow with what autism is), I could easily spend half an hour without moving, watching same view through the window or lying for an hour watching the ceiling, and it felt good. Now it is over, I am painting, sewing and doing things, but I do not take it for granted, veggetable state can come back and I do not understand with what it corellates, because amount of sun was not relevant for me in Italy, also I was taking short walks in the sun every day. All this time I was taking antidepressants too (got them prescribed for insomnia due to enxiety). So, chemical state of the brain had changed and then it changed back. These two months made me understand that our personality partly depends on the chemical state of the brain. A good lesson for me not to judge people. Anyway, I suppose, when it comes, it is good to find something that relaxes you, where you can forget yourself, do something very monotonic and enjoy it.
  8. August59

    August59 Daughters High School Graduation

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    Upstate SC, USA
    Happens to me quite often as it seems like it runs in cycles. I think PWC's probably should expect to go through these phases with what we have to put up with.

    I can tell you one thing that's for certain, and I envy you for this, in that you are very lucky to have a friend like the one you have. I have a couple of friends left, but they are not the friends they once were. More like friends out of pity as in they call up or stop by and we will talk about everything that's going on, but after about 45 mins to an hour it time for them to go. They never ask if they can help with anything and even expect me to have them a cold beer ready (I haven't had a beer in 15 years) a new movie to watch, but they will not stay that long enough to watch it.

    I hope it will be something that passes and never returns, but if it does call your friend or jump on the forum here and I'm sure we can find something to chat, bitch or holler about.

    JR

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