A new poetry book has been published telling the stories of the 2,500 people in Oxfordshire with ME or chronic fatigue syndrome.
It is called Poetry From The Bed and aims to highlight ‘the reality of life with ME for adults and children’.
The book is published by the Oxfordshire ME Group for Action and is made up from entries to its poetry competition and exhibition earlier this year.
Member Freya Morris, of Thame, said: “Retaining the capacity to read was an absolute lifesaver for me during the months I spent in bed with ME.
“Entering a poetry competition therefore seemed like a great way for me to share my experiences and to support the Oxfordshire ME Group for Action in raising public awareness of this debilitating condition.”
Fellow sufferer Jayne Diston said: “This illness devastates lives, but can be a hard illness to understand, especially as sufferers may sometimes look well.
“When you look at me what you don’t see is a woman who has always flown in the face of adversity.
“I picked myself up, time after time.”
Clare Francis, president of Action for ME and internationally acclaimed novelist, said: “These poems movingly demonstrate the sheer bravery and resilience of the human spirit.”
ME is a potentially long-term illness, which can leave people house-bound or bed-bound.
It is characterised by persistent and debilitating exhaustion and other symptoms including muscle or joint pain, migraines, problems with memory and concentration.
For more details visit www.oxnet.org.uk/omega