It was at the beginning of my A.S levels that I began to feel very run down and tired, despite getting lots of sleep. It was difficult concentrating on my studies in psychology, law and P.E, and I was feeling that I didn’t want to attend my gymnastics lessons, as I had no energy. I generally thought that this was due to putting so much effort to my studies, and not to worry about it, as I was going away for three weeks with the family in a month or so.
The holiday came, and the first week was great – lying on the beach all day! I was still feeling tired, but put this down to de-stressing! A day trip had been planned on a sailing boat, so we all set off. It came to the end of the trip and I felt so tired that I had to sleep. I had a terrible fever, and felt exhaustion like I never imagined could exist. As soon as I got back to the hotel, around 4pm, I went to bed, straight to sleep. My parents put it down to too much sun, but I could not explain how awful I felt – I knew that this was not an ordinary holiday bug or sunstroke.
The next day gave me no improvement, as did the next two weeks. I refused to see a doctor, telling my parents that there was no need, but really I was too scared that he would make me go into hospital and I would not be allowed to fly home. (I have a slight fear of doctors/hospitals!) It came to the day before the flight home and I could not imagine how I would be able to make it- even getting up and getting dressed, let alone an eight-hour flight and walking around the airport. I did not know what was wrong with me, and why I felt so unbelievably ill. My imagination came up with some horrible explanations, which made me feel even worse. The day of the flight came, and all I can remember is my mother having to dress me, and my father having to practically carry me as I walked along side him. The flight went quickly to me as I slept through the first six hours. I woke up when the food arrived. I felt much better, and for the first time since I had been ill, I felt hungry. I was so excited that I could feel myself getting better.
The feeling did not last long, and when I had returned home the exhaustion and weakness returned too. For the next few weeks all I did was sleep. My GP, a family friend, advised me that I should really go and have some blood tests done. Being terrified of needles and hospitals, this is one of my worst fears! He also said that from my symptoms I had either glandular fever or M.E, and that for both of them there was nothing he could give me, all I could do was to rest.
For the next five months, all I did was sleep and rest. There was some improvement, and I was at about 10% of my normal health. I had left sixth form for the year, as it was impossible for me to concentrate on my studies, and I could no longer take part in any gymnastics. When visiting my GP again, he said that it was not glandular fever as it had lasted for more than six months, and therefore it was now M.E/CFS. I had no idea what this was, or what it would mean I had to go through over the next few years.
After researching into M.E and realising that there was no immediate cause or cure, I started to try things that may help me. I planned a very basic daily routine, which very gradually contained more and more. The first time that I left the house was when my mum took me for a drive, and this very slowly progressed to walking along the beach. Every little thing that I did, and progression that I made, felt like running a marathon but I knew that I had to push myself. I realised the progress I had made when I started back at gymnastics, just joining in the warm up for as long as I could manage.
After one year of being ill, I was able to lead a near normal life, functioning at about 60%. I started back at sixth form to finish my A levels, and began coaching gymnastics as a part rime job. Everything I did, from writing an essay to coaching, still felt like the biggest effort, but I could see how pushing through it had helped me so far.
I stared an LLB Law degree at university and kept coaching and participating in gymnastics classes. I would struggle to have the social life that the rest of my friends would lead. I was on a year’s industrial placement as a part of my law degree, and was managing to hold down a full time job. However, this was all that I was managing to do! I had no energy to enjoy my weekend or to go out at night with friends.
The course was an eye-opening experience. I saw results after the first session, and carried on making improvements. The course itself was very informative, and taught me lots about myself and the human thought processes… I actually really enjoyed the learning! My trainer, Simon, could not have been better. He was jam-packed with knowledge and even personal experience of ME, which meant he was especially understanding and patient, and armed with an answer to any problem! I would by no means say that the treatment programme is easy; it requires a lot of effort and open-mindedness from the patient… it is not like simply going to the doctor for a pill! However, what you are armed with is the tools that enable you to get your life back. Whether or not you chose to use them is your decision, but you would be mad not to!!!
I am now at least 95% all of the time and I feel great! I am not saying that it is easy – it takes a lot of persistence and positive thinking. September 2007
January 2009 Update:
I am still feeling great, and doing great!!! In July 2008, I completed my law degree and managed to get a 1st! Graduating was a very proud moment in my life, especially given what I had been through during my degree. Whist the majority of my classmates have gone on to train as lawyers, I felt that I have needed some time to think my future, given that I now have my health back. I had always felt that life was to be based around career and hard work, but my view has now changed, and I believe life is to be based around happiness and a good balance!
School gymnastics classes. This began in September 2008, and was very successful. It could not have gone any better! I was teaching 6 days a week and still training in the sport myself for a few hours a week. I was also working a few hours with a property development company, and absolutely loving it! In a sudden change, I was then asked to take on a full time position in the New Year. After much deliberation, I gladly accepted! I have now handed all but one of my gymnastics classes over to other coaches, and am looking forward to learning lots in this New Year.
I applied to go on the new series of the Gladiators, and got from 10,000 to 40. However, I had to drop out, as the training was over my graduation, something I could just not miss!! I am planning on re-applying this year, so look out for the tiny blonde lady from Bournemouth…. (Thanks Simon!)
Issue: Clare was ill for 12 years.
Hello, it’s Clare. Sorry it has taken me so long to email you back to let you know how I’ve been getting on, I’ve been meaning to but I’m studying at the moment so I’ve just been a bit busy with all that.
Since the process I’ve felt really well, when I came back home I made sure I wouldn’t slip back into my habits.
The first few days at home I had to use the process pretty often like when I got up in the morning and at college when I’m tired towards the end of the lesson but it has worked. A lot of my friends and family have commented on how they have seen a big difference in me as I feel I have much more energy.
Over the past couple of weeks I haven’t had to use the process as often, only about once every two or three days, I hope this is a good sign as I thought I would have to do it a lot more before this but I’m still doing everything I want to do, I’m sleeping well at night, getting up early in the morning and doing everything I want during the day so I’m happy and when I do need the process it is there.
Unfortunately the process is being used to get me through my revision for my exams at the moment which is great but after my exams I look forward to doing much more exciting things with it.
Thank you again for the process, I shall write later when I’ve used it to do more exciting things than revision.
I had to use the process one day last week but that’s all and it worked well so I’m really happy at the moment, I don’t feel like I have loads of obstacles getting in the way of me doing the things I want anymore. I will definatley write you a letter in a couple of weeks after the exams so that everyone can read how I’m doing and how great the process is. Until then thank you so much for everything, I feel like the old Clare again loving life!
Hello, just thought I’d let you know that I got my A level results today I’ve got into my first choice of university. I’m really pleased!
I’m looking forward to celebrating next week with all my family and friends because unfortunately I can’t tonight because I’m working early in the morning tomorrow, hee hee! I got a part time job at B and Q.
Just want to say thank you again because without the training I wouldn’t have been able to get those marks and be looking forward to university! I shall keep you updated with how I’m getting on at university.
I first became unwell when I was 16, that was seven years ago, I am now 23.
My GP recognised that I might have had m.e almost straight away and referred me to a specialist. He confirmed this diagnosis and put me on a waiting list for an exercise rehabilitation programme. I had to wait a year for this. During this time I deteriorated. I didn’t return to school after the summer holidays, I had just done my AS levels. Everything became a struggle and if I wanted to leave the house I had to use a wheelchair. I became very dependent on my parents; I lost all my self confidence (I didn’t have much to begin with!). I had absolutely no social life.
When I started the exercise rehabilitation programme I improved physically very quickly. Within 6 months I was the fittest I had ever been and was physically able to do anything. I learned to drive, went to college and studied aromatherapy, Swedish massage and Indian head massage. I also got a part time job. But during all this I suffered very badly with anxiety and frequently had panic attacks. I started to feel very depressed. I finished college but was forced to give up my job in a local card shop. I had just turned 21 and thought that my life was over. I felt I couldn’t cope with anything.
I was referred to a psychiatrist and tried lots of different anti-depressants, none of which seemed to work. I became incredibly anxious, depressed and paranoid. I was terrified to be left on my own; I was convinced something terrible was going to happen to me. The depression became very bad; my parents had to control my medication. At my worst I had psychiatric nurses coming out to see me every day.
I have also had other health problems over the years. I was diagnosed with endometriosis when I was 18. I have had problems with my knees. I have had an operation on each knee in the past couple of years (they are now fine!). In the last 18 months I have had quite bad irritable bowel syndrome, I was in hospital for a few days at one point.
It was my GP who told me about the course (I have been very lucky with my GP!). I looked into it; I felt that it looked too good to be true. But then someone I knew who had m.e did it and the results were unbelievable. I decided then to go for it, it was definitely one of the best decisions of my life.
After the first day of the process I felt a lot more positive. After the second day I couldn’t believe the changes. I walked back to meet my parents on my own. I had not left the house or been anywhere on my own for 18 months and here I was walking through London, somewhere totally unfamiliar on my own! It really was amazing and I felt so happy, something I hadn’t felt for a long time. Also that day we went into London on the tube went to Harrods and ended up going to see Chicago! There was no way I could have done this a few days earlier. At the end of the third day I knew I would now be able to cope with pretty much anything back home.
It is now a couple of months since I did the course with Simon. Since then I have been out on my own absolutely loads! I can go out shopping, for a walk, on the train, or anything on my own. I am also driving again, I have been everywhere! Whenever I get in the car I feel totally relaxed; I never used to feel like this driving. I now have confidence in what I am doing, which I have never really had. I have started practising my massage again and I have also joined the gym! I feel that my irritable bowel has improved a lot, which is great. I now have much more independence and confidence, I can do whatever I like. I never would have imagined things turning out this good when I first applied. I feel happy and relaxed, it might not sound like much but it’s a huge change and it feels great. I’m not sure what I want to do with my life, I’m just giving myself time to enjoy life. I have had a lot to cope with over the past 7 years but I have come through it a much better person. I am now able to accept all that has happened and for the first time I am ready and able to put it all behind me. I now really do have a life that I love and Simon, I can’t thank you enough for helping me find it’.
I’m sending you a couple of pictures of me abseiling at centre parcs, we went there at the end of november last year. There is no way I would have done this before the lightning process, I was terrified of heights!
I’ve just got back off holiday, I went to France with my parents and my boyfriend. We had a great time, it was sunny and over 30c every day! It was a very relaxing holiday and lots of nice food! I’ve sent you a picture of me and my boyfriend (andy) on a boat trip down the dordogne.
In a few days time, I’m coming off my antidepressants completely, its taken a while to do but I’m almost there. I’m really excited about it which I know sounds a bit strange! We’re going to open a bottle of champagne as I will be able to have a drink!
I can’t believe it’s nearly a year since I came to see you, it’s gone so quick. I never thought I would have achieved so much this time last year, it’s really odd to remember how I felt and how scared I was to go and see you! It was definately the best choice I’ve made. Thanks again for helping through everything.
Note from Simon: a few years ago, I emailed Sue to ask her something. She told me she was away. In fact she was visiting her brother in Australia!
I want to thank you again for the wonderful help you have given me and the changes you helped me with in my life, I came to the clinic in London as a tired and exhausted person but now I’m up and going again. I can hardly believe having M.E for 10 months, then a week after coming home to Norway I was back on school and not doing bad either! I never have that awful tiredness and it actually feels good to be normally tired after riding my bike home from school (which takes about 10-15 minutes constant going upwards). My school day’s takes 8 hours (apart from Wednesday that is only 4 hours) each day for 5 days a week and I wake up at 07:00 AM. I can hardly believe the changes, my life is back and my happiness is back. Thank you so much again.
My Life with ME… BS (before Simon) and PS (Post Simon) I go sick in November 2005 when I was 11 years old. I suddenly became as week as a kitten and everything hurt. It was the week I made it into the school football team so I was very annoyed and frustrated. 6 months later I was diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome or ME
ME affected my life in every way you can imagine, my diet, my social life (or lack of) my education and my sense of humour (which disappeared altogether) It was also the pits for everyone close to me. My stomach was always upset, I got really thin and bony, I seemed to have a headache all the time and couldn’t think straight, but that could have also been the amount of bad daytime TV I dozed through. I needed an obscene amount of sleep and my bones ached, I was issued with my first set of wheels, but it was a wheelchair, not a Ferrari which was annoying, and everything I tied to do was an embarrassing hassle, from climbing stairs to the two hours a week I attended school in a specially adapted monster bus.
I had no energy for friends and nothing to say, many of them had drifted away anyway because I was boring and irritable. However I made one new friend. Curtis was a year older than me and had ME since he was 9 so he understood. One day 18 months after I first got sick, Curtis turned up to announce that that he’d given up doctors and bought a bike. This was a typical big Curtis type thing to say but over the next few weeks I noticed he was very much better and I wanted to know why. Curtis’s Mum told my Mum about the course and because I was desperate and because Curtis was so much better I pestered Mum to let me try it.
It was June 2007. My trainer was Simon Pimenta, he was gentle, engaging, patient and optimistic. He had a great range of different coloured long sleeved shirts, on day one it was a red one, then a purple one and on the final day I believe it was a blue one. I was intrigued by his cool white Sony Vaio laptop and the water cooler in the corner of the room that seemed to have a life of its own and kept gurgling in tune with the conversation. I wanted to record it. I wore a black and grey checked hoodie, for each session. I thought it was a very daring sartorial choice but thinking back it reflected the colourless life I had back then.
After the first day I still felt poorly but happier but from that day on I started thinking in a different way. After practicing the techniques for a month I really started noticing the difference in my self. My mum remembers me deciding to go out for a game of football, even though it was raining and dark. It was turning point. I still have watch myself but my life has transformed. In September 2007 I started school full time and I have kept it up. I’ve totally caught up with school work, I have much more fun, I’ve joined a gym, I have exhibited my artwork, I’ve been on a couple of walking holidays, one of them leaping around the Norwegian fjords and I love my life (mostly)
Curtis and I stay in touch. Last month we met up on an activity holiday in Devon. We were playing tennis, badly but with great enthusiasm and we both laughed at the same point because it just seemed absurdly, brilliantly unlikely that after all we had been through this something we could now do.
Leo October 2009
I came on the course in a wheelchair on the 6th nov 2007. And after the 1st day on the course I could leave the wheelchair in my hotell room and I haven’t used it since!! I was very poorly before comming on the course having been on 100% sickleave for 2,5 years and using a wheelchair for approximately 1 year. I felt completely socially isolated and was completely dependent on my husband. After doing the course I really feel that I’ve come back to life and I’m enjoying every minute of it. I have been walking loads, been christmas shopping, been able to get back in touch with friends and family, been skiiing, and I feel full of energy I’m also independent again which feels great, and for the first time in 3 years I’m able to help others instead of everybody helping me. I feels so unbelievably good not to have to plan every little thing and be able to be spontaneous again. I’m loving my life at the minute and love being able to do what I want when I want without considerations. My husband and I are now having the life we dreamed of when we got married just 2 months before I started getting ill
“My name is Siren and I trained with Simon Pimenta in the beginning of Nov 2007.
I have gradually started training and can now even run!!
I got back to skiing this winter and that was fantastic!! I am starting work againg in September (I am a physiotherapist so its hard physical work!). I am also pregnant!!! And very exited about that:) I would highly recomend LP to anyone who is struggling”.
Issue: ill for 15-20 years
After seeing Simon in London in May, I’ve had the most fantastic summer and fall!
On my way to London, I had to use a wheelchair at the airports. After the first day at the seminar I went for a walk in the park for two hours, and this really opened my eyes for what was possible. Three days later I went home, went directly from the airport till the foot of our local hill and climbed it. Climbing that hill felt great, and it gave me a feeling of success!
Since then I’ve climbed more hills and mountains then I ever dreamed off, spent lots of time with friends, attended parties, been driving for hours in my car, visited a friend in Lithuania, I eat whatever I like, exercise twice a week and last but not least; I went to my brothers wedding in Canada in September! I’ve got lots of joy and laughter in my life now, and I feel great!
Attending the seminar is the best thing I’ve ever done for myself!
Bente – Norway, November 2008
Hi Simon! Just thought I’d share something with you.. 🙂 It’s almost a year since I joined your seminar in London. I sometimes find it hard to believe how much my life changed for the past year, and I’m so happy and grateful about it.
I know I did most of these changes myself, but you made me believe I could do it, and that made it come true. Thank you (again)!
I’m going to spend this Sunday on a five hour sail! If someone had told me a year ago..
Take care, Bente
25 April, 2009
I undertook the course on 4th-6th August 2009. On the first day of the course I remember having to ask my boyfriend to slow down regularly as we travelled across London, he is a very fast walker and I had trouble keeping up! At the end of the first day I suddenly realised that during our return journey I had walked alongside him and kept pace without asking him to slow once!!! What a difference!
Since completing the course and returning home to Norfolk I have noticed a number of positive changes. The day after I came home I went shopping in Norwich with my brother, normally half an hour of shopping would be enough to exhaust me for a few days but on this occasion we shopped for 3 hours before heading for home and using the process enabled me to maintain energy levels and concentration for the whole time. Later that afternoon I had to go to the supermarket for a few essentials, while waiting at the checkout I had a major slump in energy which would normally have caused me to do stress and frustration but on this occasion I did the process and my energy and concentration returned. What a superb day!!
Over the past month I have achieved a number of things that since being diagnosed with m.e I have been unable to do. I have completed 2 cycle rides in a local forest, the first was 4 miles long that took about an hour and a half, lots of regular breaks and took my time but really enjoyed it. I must admit it shocked a few muscles so was using the process a lot on unusual muscle aches for the next couple of days but it was really nice to feel my body really had worked and reacted in a “normal” way! The 2nd was slightly shorter, I managed this in an hour and was able to pedal faster overall and take shorter, regular breaks. Superb!! My brother observed that I am now able to keep up with him while walking, even going up hill, which over the last few years he has had to stop and wait for me or had to slow right down to walk with me, so thats absolutely brilliant!
I am now able to carry out household tasks without having to stop and have a sit down after only a few minutes, for example, before the course. I would put the washing on and then have to sit down for half an hour at least before being able to wash a few dishes or some other household task if not just stay sitting down. Now I find I am able to systematically carry out household tasks one after the other without needing to rest which is fabulous!! I’m now able to cook a roast dinner for myself and 5 other members of my family, from scratch, all preparation, cooking and dishing up myself without doing stress or tiredness, somehow the food tastes so much better for it!! Spending time with my godchildren has been so much more enjoyable, we have been for a 4 hour session at the beach with jumping the waves and building sandcastles along with general conversations and story book reading, maintaining energy levels and concentration has been wonderful!
My partner accepted an offer on the sale of our flat in May and since then we have been waiting to exchange contracts and found various reasons have cropped up to prolong the wait. Finally exchange happened end of last week and so we have been given 3 weeks to find somewhere to live, pack up the house and move within.
Previously I would have regularly being doing stress, frustration at my lack of energy and probably, constant fatigue but with using my new skills I am able to cope with the moving house process in a logical and calm manner, while maintaining energy levels.
Thank you very much Simon for all your excellent teaching and support.
10 September 2009
It’s been one and a half months since I came to you for the seminar, and it’s been one and a half months of a new and different life for me.
When I came to London I had been having chronic leg- and back pain for ten years, and I was diagnosed with three disc prolapses, and thus believed (and was told) that there was nothing I could do about it. I would have to live with it probably for the rest of my life.
My friend had been at the training, and felt completely well after 3 years of illness, and as a physiotherapist she encouraged me to try it. “But I have disc prolapses – there’s nothing to do about it”, was my reply. How could I treat something that physical with a training like the course? She convinced me that it would be a really good thing for me, and I decided to apply. I knew that I had to truly believe that this was going to make me well, and so I told everybody that in a short while I would be able to do whatever; football, skiing, high heels and running, convincing others and through that also myself that this would be it. But deep inside I didn’t really believe it – it sounded too good to be true.
After the first day of the training I did the process like a maniac trying to make it work, and I sensed some changes, but I felt that my situation was different than all the other situations I had heard about, and that I wouldn’t really be able to get well. After all none of the cases were concerning back pain like my own. The second day of the process you made me realise that this was the case with many people – that ‘everybody’s’ case was ‘a bit different’, and just like that things started to change, and I experienced relaxation in my body for the first time in ten years. Wow! I felt like I was drunk and floating on air – what an amazing feeling!
The first days after the training I was in transition and changed back and forth between complete happiness and harmony, and complete hopelessness and the feeling that I would never make it. For a week this went on, and then I slowly started to relax, trusting that I now had the tools to make myself feel completely well. The first time I went jogging I was really nervous and scared, and thrilled when I experienced that I could do it. Just for 15 minutes, but still – that was an achievement! Three weeks ago I bought a membership card with a sports-centre, and I have been doing spinning and step – I can assure you that step was something I could only dream about a few months ago. Last week it was easter, and I went skiing every day. Except huge blisters on my heels I had no pain whatsoever – it was amazing!
Now I’m not scared of doing anything (as far as back pain goes, that is) – I’m looking forward to the weather to improve so that I can start orienteering, and this summer I want to play football – it’s so great to know that I will be able to! There are so many other things that have improved in my life since the process – I’m much more relaxed, I don’t stress about little things, and I am much happier. Learning the techniques is one of the smartest decisions I have made in my life, and I am so grateful to you for teaching it to me – you will always have a special place in my life!
Although 11 months is short for this chronic condition, it was hell. My strength deteriorated so much that by 8AM, I could hardly hold my cup of tea. My mother who is 78 years old, had to live with me and my daughter. I lost my job, could not be a mother to my child and entered a financial crisis and despair.
I also suffered with severe constant headaches, muscular pains, high sensitivity to light, movement and noise. I could barely sleep, could not read nor listen to music and hardly walk.
I attended the three half days training in the techniques. On the first day, because I applied exactly as Mr. Pimenta taught us, I was able to take the tube home across London, walk and spent a normal evening (all of this for the first time in 11 months!).
(From Suzanne Michal, 43 years old, single mum)
I had always been energetic, sporty and had a lust for life. I’m not sure I actually knew the word NO, because I wanted to do everything I thought was exciting. My family and friends are very important to me, so I tried to be there for them as much as I possible could.
In 2000 I got the diagnose migraine. I used to have migraine once or twice a week, and I had to stay in bed until it was over. About 2 years ago, after an infection, I became ill. Nothing seemed to help and I only got sicker. All my energy was gone, and I had all kind of strange symptoms. It was very frustrating and sometimes all I managed to do was sit in the sofa. As the stubborn person I am, I continued to push myself to see what I could do – this would be followed by days or weeks in bed, and a doctor telling me that I had to take more care of myself and rest.
I went to see Simon in Bergen in August. I was excited and I really hoped this would help. Already the first day I got changes that I had only dreamed about. I woke up with a migraine, zero energy and nausea. After one hour at the course I could only hear Simons voice, but wasn’t able to see him clearly. I expected a very long day! But that didn’t happen. After Simon had taken me through the process, the migraine and nausea almost disappear and I felt the energy coming back. At the end of that day I was out eating at a restaurant, walking for hours and I had a great time. The first day really convinced me and opened my eyes for what was possible. At the last day of the course I did a summary of what I had done these days, and I actually thought it was quite impressive – the course (at least 6 hours a day), walking (we are talking hours), shopping, visiting friends, restaurants and the cinema. After three days in Bergen I travelled home, reorganized my living room and had friends over for dinner in the evening. The next day I climb a local mountain and went out for dinner. It was a big success!