At the age of thirty Wendy Evans, a vivacious, versatile and devoted primary school teacher with singing and acting talents, was struck down by a devastating and very rare nerve disease with serious and debilitating symptoms including pain and foreign body sensations in her throat, shock-like pains in her ears and neck, and difficulty and pain when talking, swallowing, chewing, coughing and yawning. As a consequence, her teaching career and singing aspirations were tragically cut short. Frustratingly, despite numerous doctors’ and consultants’ appointments, and innumerable tests and scans, the medical profession seemed unable to diagnose her problem, to the point that it was viewed as purely psychosomatic and she was seen as a paranoid malingerer suffering from stress and depression and whose problems would be best served by a psychiatrist and a concoction of drugs. But Wendy knew different and was determined to obtain a definitive diagnosis for her condition, which was making her life increasingly unbearable. Wendy’s book takes you on a journey from the onset of the illness, through the following 18 months of searching for the cause of her terrible disease and developing an understanding of her disorder, until she finally received a diagnosis of glossopharyngeal neuralgia and underwent brain surgery. When this did not prove to be the cure, she began to look at alternative therapies as a possible way of managing the disease and has finally mapped out a brighter future for herself, regaining control of her life through treatments such as the Bowen technique, craniosacral therapy, energy healing and remedial massage therapies.
Keywords: autobiography, brain, mental, nerve, disease, fatigue, vagoglossopharyngeal neuralgia, glossopharyngeal neuralgia, GPN, medical, fighting, life story, pain, neurology