From BMJ Opinion.
“Has covid-19 gone?” My first thought every morning for six months. A few weeks ago, I was jubilant. The muscle aches had evaporated, my head was clear. I announced this to Rachael, a friend who knows chronic fatigue well. “Fantastic, Paul. You have found your baseline.” Crestfallen, I realised this was not the end; it was the end of the beginning.
The beginning, a “near death” experience with covid-19 that I described earlier, was like a grenade had exploded in my hands. Dazed, deaf, and befuddled, I spent weeks wondering, where has the shrapnel lodged? Are some fragments still fizzing? In my heart? Is my brain still infected? Why was I stumbling for words?
I knew I needed to pace. My head was foggy, I lost my symptom diary spreadsheet, I forgot to measure screen time. I sought professional help, I wanted feedback, practical advice. I was desperate, tired, grumpy. I wanted someone to help me pace and thought occupational health could refer me to a specialist service. Instead, I was told I needed a course of cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT).
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