A woman’s plea for help after years of suffering with an undiagnosed disability has gone viral.
Vicky Nash, 28, from Quayside, Fleetwood, suffers from a range of debilitating ‘invisible illnesses’ that make her every move agony.
In an ‘Invisible Illness Awareness’ video documenting her experiences, she vowed to help other people struggling with invisible disabilities.
The appeal got more than 120,000 hits on social media websites in less than a week.
She said: “It’s gone crazy. I wasn’t expecting it at all.
“I’ve had parents with sick children thanking me for helping them understand what their kids are going through.
“I even had a big tough looking tattooed guy message me to thank me for my video and for helping him open up about his problems.”
Seventeen years ago, Ms Nash was an energetic and active 11-year-old.
But everything changed in 1999, when she began to experience muscle pain and dizziness.
She said: “I slowly realised that couldn’t do all of the things I used to do.
“Simple things like going out in the car or going shopping became really difficult. It hurt to move and I was exhausted.
“By the time I was 16 I was in constant pain.
“I had to drop out of school because I was in too much pain to leave the house.”
In her viral video, Ms Nash says how she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia, which causes muscle pain, and a serious disorder of the nervous system that causes tiredness and breathing problems in March.
She says she had to fight for 15 years to be taken seriously by doctors,
She said: “GPs are used to treating things they can see, such as tonsilitis and ear infections. I don’t think I was taken seriously because I looked normal on the outside.
“People would tell me I would be fine if I just went for a walk – but I can’t walk more than a few steps without my heart racing.”
“It took every ounce of energy I had in me to make that video.
“I was in so much pain doing it. It took me a week to edit and I spent two solid days afterwards in bed with migraine and shoulder and neck pain.
“But it was worth it if it’s helped people understand what we have to deal with on a daily basis.”
Despite her daily struggles, Ms Nash says she manages to keep smiling thanks to her boyfriend and full-time carer, Dave Robinson, 40.
Mr Robinson quit his job as a security officer to take care of Ms Nash full-time.
She said: “He does all the cooking and the cleaning and the shopping.
“He even carries me to the shower and helps me wash my hair and helps me get dressed on a morning.
“He understands that I can’t do things on my own. I’m lucky to have him.
“We love each other to bits.”