It's only after a few dips in Lake Tuapo that we discover we've been swimming in the crater of a giant volcano. As large as Singapore and 159m deep, apparently the original volcanic explosion was so big it left the skies dark in Europe and China. I don't quite know how they know this as the last eruption was 1,800 years ago. But somewhere, beneath the rock far below us is a bed of molten lava. There have been about 28 major eruptions in the last 26,000 years so I think we're going to be OK.
Lake Taupo has become a bit of a marker for me. I'm here with my parents, sister and her family all on holiday together. I make the best of my mobility, use a chairlift to get up a mountain, love the space, am happy being the designated driver when they head off on treks. My body is still crashing and I'm finding it so hard to manage. I feel as if I'm going crazy sometimes. I'm using a Fitbit to calculate my steps and find that ever elusive 'baseline', the amount of activity it's safe to do without pushing my body beyond its limits for recovery.
The first day we arrive I don't swim, I sit and take photos from the lake shore. The following two days, still keeping my movements down to a minimum I'm too exhausted by 4pm to make it the 5 metres or so from the car to the lake. I sit there sobbing. I just want to swim. I do make it to the shore and I do get into the water but this means my mobility is back where it was a year ago. I keep slipping backwards and it seems there's nothing I can do. I reduce my steps even further. If I move as little as I possibly can, down to about 2000 steps a day (you could easily do about 1000 steps getting ready to leave the house in the morning) and finally, I have enough energy to get from the car to the sand and swim really gently.
An ME/CFS Thriver