How I feel seven weeks on after having shingles – Am I better or am I worse?
Since having shingles, dealing with shingles and then recovering from shingles, I wanted to give you all an update on how I have been feeling and whether my holistic approach has worked or not, seven weeks on from having dealt with it.
In truth, I think I managed just fine. Dealing with it mostly physically and mentally was challenging. Especially as life must go on,. I can stay hiding in my bedroom forever, using ‘I have shingles and have been unwell’ excuse every time I can’t get something done.
Or can I?
In truth, though my recovery time went well, and I managed to deal with it both physically and mentally holistically as previously blogged. In truth, I still feel my immune system took such a beating and it’s taking me a while to recover from it all.
It also doesn’t help that we are in the middle of winter.
Though Aussie winters are mild compared to other countries, say northern Europe. For our standard, it gets cold. And although the sun shines most days in our winter months. We do still get darker days from 4pm, cold winds, rain and of course when snow season sets in down south, we get those lovely icy antarctic climate changes sweeping through Sydney, bringing a little misery with it. Perhaps if it brought a little snow into Sydney, that misery would shift to happiness. For a little while anyway.
But I digress. With all of those contributing factors, along with life picking up again with events for Bondi Beauty (the publication I write for) and other client work I do freelance work for, and home life as well. It’s as though my body has opted out of this journey of wanting to be holistically healing itself, sending my messages of tiredness, exhaustion levels through the roof. I don’t feel like I am getting enough sleep, and the pain of the shingles just won’t go away.
I am a motivated person. So I will always just keep going. I keep up the yoga, the Chiro, the vitamins, the minerals, the health foods, and road trips to take a break from mundane routines. But all in all, the truth of the matter is, no matter how healthy you are, or how mentally and physically strong you are with any type of illness, your body will always speak the truth to you. And the truth is, shingles is here to stay.
Let me clear though. That doesn’t mean I have a terrible shingles rash still on the body, and nor do I have many of the symptoms that come with shingles. However, I do still have the nerve pain. I feel like I have researched shingles to death on so many levels. And it comes down to one thing, shingles leaves a permanent scar on your nervous system, and no healthy lifestyle, or change in mental attitude can alter that. In-fact the only treatment for that is time and patience. Lots of it.
So, how do I feel Seven weeks on from having Shingles?
Apart from the tiredness and exhaustion I mentioned earlier, I have since then had a head cold, two cold sores and now a nasty cough.
A reminder that I still need to take things easy, get plenty fo rest, stress less and manage life better. My immune system is quite run down it would seem. AS if having shingles had already taught me that. The lesson I have learned since then however, over the last seven weeks, is it can take some time for your immune system to fully recover from shingles. A strong reminder of what you see on the outside, is not always what is happening on the inside.
I may look fine on the outside, seem refreshed, not tired, happy and well managed. But deep down inside my body, there is a whole other universe going through the motions of recovering from shingles, healing from it, and keeping it at bay so it doesn’t retriever again. A common thing to happen with a lot of people who get shingles. And something I most definitely don’t want to happen.
What I have learnt from all of this?
Take it easy. I need to continue to be more mindful. Just because I can no longer see the rash, and it’s been seven weeks, that doesn’t mean that the shingles virus isn’t still trying to cause some damage on the inside. And the nervous system is the main function of the body that takes the most beating from shingles. So being stressed, dealing with stress, not getting enough rest and sleep, will all contribute to a longer heal time from shingles.
The hardest part of all of this? Is explaining that to people. I really hope they do understand when I state I have not been well and if they could be a little patient with me as I try too get my head back in the game on multiple levels. In most part, people have been great and super understanding.
I don’t like to use the term ‘it’s been a real journey’ but it really does explain what I am going through. Since I was first diagnosed with shingles, to the healing and recovering process, to the post recovery part of the journey I am in now.