The Silent Cancer Side Effect – Fatigue

Just to be extremely clear, fatigue is not the same as being really, really, really, tired. It is more than that, and takes hold of your whole being, physically and mentally. Anyone who has had children will probably know what I am talking about, right?  But it’s permanent.

Fatigue takes a toll both physically and mentally. If you are anything like me you are completely hopeless after a bad nights sleep. With fatigue it feels like that all the time, times a million.

Even simple activities, or activities that you wouldn’t normally consider taxing like watching a movie or reading a book can suddenly feel like way to much and like it would require far too much effort.

Signs Of Having Fatigue

  • You don’t feel anymore restored or awake even when you have had a good nights sleep.
  • You feel like nothing can restore your energy.
  • You are often unable to finish tasks, even when you desperately want to achieve them.
  • The above point is usually coupled with a severe lack of concentration.
  • You may also find that you suffer with memory loss as a result.
  • Physically, the lack of energy can mean it is physically draining to undertake the simplest of physical activities.
  • There may even be loss of motor skills.

I really can’t stress enough to severity of fatigue. And, it’s beyond annoying!

You want to be up and about, trying to live a normal life but feel unable to do anything, it is infuriating! Even more annoyingly it can last for years after cancer treatment has finished.

imagesFor me, fatigue was the worst the years after I had cancer and finished my treatment. I think it was a combination of my body healing, riding itself of an unbelievable amount of chemicals and poisons and getting over the emotional side of everything that I had just been through. Hardly surprising but still unforgivably annoying.

I really wanted to make a point about the fatigue because it so easily gets overlooked. Even when you are the one with cancer, I think it is hard to identify it within yourself. Energy levels will fluctuate too much from one day to the next when you have cancer and/or fatigue that one day you will think your fine and the next day you are on the floor and I think the unpredictability of it can be equally hard.

The intensity of the fatigue will inevitably vary from person to person so just because I experienced it quite severely doesn’t mean that you (or your loved one) will, but I would keep an eye out for it and just be extra sympathetic to yourself if you aren’t able to do things as often or as quickly as you hoped.

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7 thoughts on “The Silent Cancer Side Effect – Fatigue

  1. I just got your book. I ordered it ages ago but it only came in yesterday. Just have to tell you it’s brilliant. I have metastatic colorectal cancer. The book is spot on. Thank you so much. Every blessing xx

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  2. Hi Nicola, as always I find your posts very inspiring and helpful although I personally have never had cancer nor as anyone close to me ( touch wood, I have gone through a tragedy tho) It is such a coincidence, I was thinking about you and that I hadn’t read your blog for awhile and went onto my blog and saw your blog at the top of my blogroll.
    I am helping out or temporarily helping out at The Blog Centre (www.theblogcentre.co.za) where we are starting to do interviews and guest posts and I have been wondering if you would be interested in being interviewed as an author of your book as well as a blogger and an inspiring lady.
    No pressure if you don’t want to.
    Take care
    Dianne

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