I heard a podcast and went on to Google Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and here I am, on the Mayo Clinic site and posting in response to this article. I feel like I have stumbled into a group that is related to my experiences with pain and chronic conditions. I went through the stress of divorce (not very gracefully, I must add) and developed shingles in the midst of it all. my shingles lingered for over a year as Post-Herpetic Neuropathy (spelling?). The nerve involved in my case touched my bladder and colon, so that each time I had a flare-up, I had overactive symptoms in both areas that made any kind of activity difficult and working became a challenge. As I went to different doctors to determine that specific body systems were not diseased, I tried to just "get up and Go". I was such and active person, but I found myself sitting/sleeping on the couch A LOT! Not because I wanted to, but because it just was too tiring to do anything. A flare-up would last 7-8 days and medicines made symptoms controllable, but when I was finally ready to get up, I had let all my chores and responsibilities go. This caused me to jump in and try and tackle them all, only to make me tired once again and head to the couch for another nap. I find that family and friends want to help (and do), but just don't understand why I don't just "Get over it!" This can leave me feeling down and flawed, because I also want to get over it as well. It is frustrating to no end. I was on Lyrica and have now weaned myself off it…for the most part. It made me gain weight and my joints began to hurt to no end. sometimes I feel a million years old. My 80 year old dad is so much more active then I am. When I do start walking again, I find I hurt my knees and my hip (involved in the shingles) pops in and out. A great physical therapist helped (much more than any doctor I have seen) and I bought a good bike. What I am now struggling with is that periods of focused mental/physical activity (such as a home project or change at work) causes my body to experience STRESS. This stress (some of which I welcome and find to be a positive) seems to cause a flare-up. Flare-ups start with over-active bladder, then IBS, and lead my back to LYRICA. They only last a couple of days, and the following fatigue is shorter too, but I don't know what to do to avoid this physical response to the regular rigors of life. Any suggestions? I love meditation, and think mindfulness is very helpful to me. But, when I have an episode, I find my mind going back to a preoccupation with this stuff. I so tired of this cycle. Is there a realistic hope that it will all be behind me some day?