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Ashleigh

Ashleigh

Name: Ashleigh Lovett
Age: 17
Year of the Fix: 2013
Location: Harwich, Essex
Campaign: To raise awareness of the medical condition ME

When I was 15, I began to suffer headaches, tiredness and lack of energy. I was diagnosed with ME, a condition which is often known as chronic fatigue syndrome, and it’s changed my life.

 

My passions have always been music and sport, but my illness now makes these things more difficult for me. People didn’t believe I was unwell at first, as there is no physical sign of ME. Instead, I was called ‘spoilt’ and ‘lazy'.

 

The fatigue you feel as a ME sufferer is one of its main symptoms. It can leave you bed-bound, or with heavy limbs and painful legs.

 

The aim of my Fixers project is to help other people gain a better understanding of how it feels to have ME.

 

By raising awareness, I hope to prevent other ME sufferers feeling as isolated as I did.

Here is a list of Fixers helping me with my Fix:

 

Maisie Green
Shannon Abbott
Ross Kemp
Jodie Cleary
Rhianon Garrett
Tia Gardiner

Abbie Elwood

Emily Heath

Tymes Trust
Jane Colby, Executive Director at Tymes Trust, a charity for children and young people with ME and their families, supports my Fix. She was interviewed to appear in my broadcast piece.

October 2013

My story was featured on the ME Association website and in the Harwich and Manningtree Standard, and Newmarket Journal.

 

I also have had great and encouraging feedback from people who have seen my campaign. Below are some of the comments I have so far received:

 

Sheila Batham: 'Thanks for trying to get the message about ME across to people. My daughter has had this terrible illness for 14 years, and the more people know about it the better.'

 

Maisie Green, Colchester Institute: 'This is a condition that nobody can really understand unless they are living through it themselves. You do need lots of help and support to help face each day and some days can be hell. Helping someone come to terms with managing the condition helps, as does careful planning of each day. It was great to see a positive story well done. If you have understanding of people around you it can make a world of difference.'

 

Anya Lovett: 'I am so proud of my sister Ashleigh for doing this - seeing my big sister who is like a best friend to me in constant pain is heart breaking. She has done so well to get to the stage she is at now. The support she has had is amazing and I would love for this project to be even more successful to help other sufferers know they are not alone.'

 

Jean Pye: 'I think you are doing a great job, Ashleigh, making people aware of this debilitating illness. I have lived with the condition for years and know how it affects your life. Because it is a chronic condition, you get frustrated and it can make some people depressed. But I keep clinging to the fact that one day a cure will be found and this dreadful illness can be taken from my body, and I wish that dream for all fellow sufferers.'

 

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Fixers is a project of the Public Service Broadcasting Trust, funded by the National Lottery through the Big Lottery Fund, and featured on ITV.

Charity No 298643    Company No 2194957