Kirsty Young discusses chronic pain on return to Desert Island Discs

Kirsty Young recalled having to stop broadcasting for several years due to a chronic pain condition that made her question her own identity, saying that “you lose your sense of self”.

he, 54, hosted nearly 500 editions of BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Disc between 2006 and 2018 before having to leave the program to treat fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis.

Appearing in a special edition of the castaway show that aired on Christmas Day, Young told Lauren Laverne, who is taking on her presenting role, that she is feeling “so much better” now, and Think about the experience of returning to broadcasting after a break.

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Kirsty Young joins Festive Desert Island Discs (Amanda Mango Benson/BBC)

Young explains that she initially spent a year meeting with different specialists trying to figure out the nature of her condition until she found an “excellent” rheumatology professor who had diagnosed her. guess for her.

She said he also warned her that she must take her condition “seriously” and reduce stress in her life along with medical treatment if she wants to get well.

“It was said with the utmost kindness but it was just a moment of complete realism and clarity, and I remember pulling over to the curb and just having an old fashioned greeting, in Scots parlance. , a nice greeting (crying) and I was like ‘yeah, they’re real and you’re really going to have to think about this,'” she said.

“I am very conscious when it comes to this, people sit across from doctors and get diagnoses that are much more serious than mine, but it was a very painful thing and I was in pain. and chronic pain is a serious problem. absolute pain, literally and figuratively, to deal with.

“It crushes you, you lose your personality, you lose your sense of humor, you lose your sense of self. Has all the stuff that comes with it. Terrible. So I have to take it seriously if I want to get better. Me too.”

Young admitted that she felt “very shaken” at having to leave her job as a broadcaster, which she “loved so much” and had planned to do until they forced her to leave.

She added: “I thought if I’m not, then what am I for? Kirsty for what? I have felt that.

“That’s obviously ridiculous, because using that outdated phrase, ‘The cracks are where the light gets in,’ and all the other things that happened were good things.

“At that point, you almost lost yourself. And when you have chronic pain, you lose yourself anyway so there’s a lot going on.

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Kirsty Young interviewed 496 abandoned people during her time on BBC Radio 4 (BBC/PA)

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According to the NHS, fibromyalgia, also known as fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS), is a long-term condition that causes pain throughout the body.

Rheumatoid arthritis is described as a long-term condition that causes pain, swelling, and stiffness.

After a number of years of absence, Young was able to return to cover the BBC on the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations earlier this year as well as the closing moments of the late monarch’s funeral at the Royal Palace. St George’s Chapel in Windsor.

The announcer said she wanted to find the right words to end the show and sum up the significance of the historic day but admitted: “I actually had a bit of a moment. It was emotional.”

The special episode also marked the end of Desert Island Discs’ 80th year, with Young interviewing 496 dropouts during her time on the show.

Reflecting on the show’s appeal, she said: “I used to describe it as (having) some sort of hammock-like quality, just to fit the person there.

“So therefore, if it’s some kind of Premier League footballer or if it’s an astrophysicist, their music and the amount of time you spend talking to them, as well as the entrance and the museum exit, are similar things. Beautiful soft and comfortable.

“So people come into the studio and they’re surrounded by their own furniture and their own music, so they’re comfortable with that familiarity, and whatever they choose to bring to life. Each show has a unique taste.”

The full interview with Kirsty Young on Desert Island Discs will be broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and BBC Sounds on Christmas Day at 11:15am. Kirsty Young discusses chronic pain on return to Desert Island Discs

Fry Electronics Team

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