Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – A Day In The Life Of Hailey Hudson

Welcome to my first guest post in this new series where we will explore the impact of chronic illness and disability on our daily lives. Illness can have devastating effects not only on our own lives and bodies, but also on those closest to us.

Despite this, you might be surprised to find out just how resilient and courageous people with chronic conditions are. We weren’t really given a choice in the matter, we have to quickly learn to adapt in spite of harsh conditions. I hope you will enjoy this series and perhaps even learn a few tricks on how you might improve your quality of life.

Today I have the privilege of sharing Hailey Hudson’s story with you.

Hailey is a 19-year-old published author who freelances as a voiceover artist and is the site coordinator at a charity that tutors refugee children.

What is your diagnosis?

After two years and ten types of doctors, I am still technically undiagnosed, but I most likely have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. My daily symptoms include drowsiness, full-body fatigue, nerve pain in my legs, headaches, dizziness, and shortness of breath.

What did a typical day look like before you fell ill?

Before I got sick, I used to wake up at 5:30 to work out (something I absolutely cannot imagine doing now!). I would then go to class (I got sick my junior year of high school), study, go to work (I worked as a nanny in high school, which involved lots of physical activities such as playing tag and jumping on the trampoline), and then go to softball practice before finally coming home and going to bed around 10.

What does a typical day look like now?

Honestly, a typical day for me now looks fairly similar to the way my day used to look–it’s just that now, I’m just extremely exhausted and in pain all day.

The first summer I was sick, I sat in bed all day every day; not only did I still feel horrible, but I was very depressed. All I did was worry about my health. So I figured, if I was going to feel horrible anyway, I might as well enjoy myself and get something done.

Now I’m 19 and have been sick for over two years. I wake up around 8, but I don’t get out of bed until 9, because my legs are typically numb and exhausted. I work from home all morning (doing freelance writing); when I break for lunch, I work out briefly if I have the energy (I typically don’t, but I force myself to do a few push-ups anyway). Then I get back in bed or on the couch and continue writing.

Many afternoons, I leave the house for a few hours to do one of three things: tutor refugee kids at a local nonprofit, coach softball, or spend time with a friend. I can handle one short outing a day, but anything more than that might send me into a flare. After this outing, I come home and read until time for bed (9:00 at the latest). I also eat a lot throughout the day! My energy falls even more quickly if I don’t.

What are some of the helpful adjustments you have made?

I go to bed in-between 8 and 9 every night, and I get up in-between 8 and 9 every morning. I use a wheelchair sometimes, and when I’m at an event in public or with friends, I sit down as much as possible in order to conserve my energy, because my legs will get numb if I stand too long (if I do something physical in the evening, they are paralyzed when I wake up the next morning).

I eat gluten-free, sugar-free, and processed-foods-free (most days, that is!). If I’m going somewhere in the morning or in the evening–the times when I’m the drowsiest–I ask a friend or family member to drive me instead of driving myself.

Interview Day in my life, Hailey CFS, PIN

Pin Hailey’s story

Share your favourite survival kit items.

I couldn’t survive without my Vitamin B12 supplements–they have helped me so much! I was so much sicker before I began taking them.

I also couldn’t live without my three daily planners; scheduling out my day during the few hours I am awake and alert helps me to attain a high level of productivity.

Day In My Life, Hailey Hudson, CFS

Connect with Hailey

You can learn more about CFS/ME over at the NHS and M.E. Support websites.

Would you like to be featured in this series?

If you would like to share your story to help raise awareness for your condition and show others they’re not alone, please visit this page and complete the interview form. I look forward to hearing how you are rocking this chronic illness thing! – Char

Please share this page before you go:
Chronically Hopeful
Chronically Hopeful

Char was born and raised in South Africa, but has been settled in Europe for over 20 years. She's passionate about finding ways to live well, despite chronic illness.

Apart from blogging, she enjoys art, cooking, reading, gardening, gaming and learning new things. She speaks English, Italian and Afrikaans fluently and is slowly learning French too.

She used to be a teacher, but has been housebound with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis since 2015. Since then, she's focused on spending the little energy and strength she has each day on the people and activities she loves. Finding joy in the little things and celebrating the ordinary.


Let's Chat! Leave A Comment Below:

  1. I’m partially disabled and have to moderate my physical activity so I won’t get too exhausted so I can definitely relate to that part but this sounds so much worse, I’m so sorry that they haven’t given you a proper diagnose.

    • Thank you Lise! I appreciate you taking the time to read and I too would just like to have a name to put to the symptoms. But we can get through it together.