May News Brief

Greetings Further Shore friends,

Happy month of May, when we celebrate Beltane, Cinco de Mayo, Mother’s Day and Memorial Day alongside warmer temps and the earth greening up. Today I’m starting with a bit of news about my own health. Some of you in the FS community are aware that since early 2020 I’ve experienced severe allergy symptoms. An event in January has put me on the path to understanding chronic illness and how to take care of myself. If you want to read more about what is going on for me and how this is shaping my life, visit the special blog post A New Perspective on Wellness.

Now for the News:

  • This Month’s Special Day: Our special day this month is May 12th, International Awareness Day for Chronic Immunological and Neurological Diseases (CIND), and Florence Nightingale’s birthday.  Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) also known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) has become more prevalent due to the pandemic. This syndrome affects people of all ages and is considered one of the “invisible or hidden disabilities”  that make life difficult for millions of people. This short video from Giles Meehan describes what is helpful when you know someone with invisible conditions. The video’s focus is on ME/CFS but applies to other autoimmune disorders as well. Giles’s YouTube collection offers 15 videos describing helpful things to do when your friend or family member has ME/CFS. These videos were made prior to the pandemic but they are still relevant. On May 12th take a few minutes to Learn From ME.
  • On the Blog:  Visit A,B,C’s for Living Well to brush up on easy to use skills to live well and support the ones you care for. You may also view the current, and all past newsletters here.
  • Pandemic tidbit: The latest SARS-CoV-2 subvariant XBB.1.16 (aka “Arcturus”) has a reputation for causing pink eye (conjunctivitis). Health authorities around the globe say that conjunctivitis is already a known COVID symptom. People experiencing this symptom may want to seek a PCR test to keep from spreading the virus. This Huffington Post article by Julia Ries describes 5 long covid myths we need to stop believing.  
  • Movies that Move Us:  In keeping with our special day, May 12th, this month’s film, Unrest, is a Sundance award-winning documentary about ME/CFS and other chronic complex illnesses. It chronicles Jennifer Brea’s journey from patient, to advocate, to storyteller. The journey begins when Jennifer is a 28-year-old Harvard PhD student who is left bedridden by a fever. Scoring 100% on the Tomatometer, audiences report being riveted by Jen’s frank telling about her life with ME/CFS. Described as brave, jaw-dropping, and sometimes hard to watch, Unrest provides an informative, nuanced glimpse into chronic illness.
  • Correction:  The April News Brief gave a shout of thanks to Further Shore volunteer, Jack Pelton. In truth, his Koala Bear service in Flagstaff is still deeply cherished, and he currently is a volunteer with the Center for Conscious Living and Dying in Asheville, NC.
  • Quote of the Month:  “We are stronger in the places we have been broken. ~ Ernest Hemingway

May all beings be safe, well, happy, and content.

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