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EastEnders icon taking career break to focus on health and wellbeing

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LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 24: Martine McCutcheon attends 'The Bromley Boys' UK premiere held in The Great Room at Wembley Stadium on May 24, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Joe Maher/Getty Images)
Martine recently opened up on Instagram about her recent hospitalisation after being left ‘unable to stand’ (Picture: Getty Images Europe)

Former EastEnders legend Martine McCutcheon revealed she is taking a break from acting to focus on her health and wellbeing.

The soap actress, who was best known for playing Tiffany Mitchell from 1995 to 1998, apologised to her Instagram followers for social media silence.

Sharing a post of her alongside husband Jack McManus, she penned: ‘Hello! I’ve not been on here much. But taking some time out from work and social media was much needed. In fact, it was life-changing. I’ve had dates in the diary for work (and the pressure that comes with that) since I was a kid… I’ve never taken time out of work properly before.

‘I’ve been in this industry since I was a toddler and to simply have that time away from it all just for me and my health has been like I’ve sighed the biggest exhale! So many of us identify ourselves or our success with what we do. Or what our career is. That’s okay.

She continued: ‘But there is so much more to us than that. I’m evolving and changing and so is my idea of success and happiness. Finding myself in who I am now, rather than who I am has been so liberating!’

Martine concluded: ‘Life has a funny way of making you stop if you insist on running. So decide to take care of yourself. Before it’s taken out of your hands. It’s a busy time of year coming up and an exciting one! So I’m building momentum. Getting ready for it all! I’ve just been for my gentle walk with Jack [her husband] today. Now I’m cosying up watching TV with the candles lit.’

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Bài viết do Martine McCutcheon (@martinemccutcheon) chia sẻ

This comes after Martine opened up about her myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) diagnosis, also known as chronic fatigue syndrome, in 2011, and six years later was diagnosed with Lyme disease. She also suffers from fibromyalgia. These conditions cause a range of debilitating symptoms for the actress.

Fibromyalgia is a condition that causes pain all over the body, sleep problems, fatigue, and often emotional and mental distress.

Chronic fatigue syndrome causes a wide range of symptoms, including extreme tiredness, while Lyme disease is a bacterial infection spread by bites from infected ticks. Symptoms include tiredness, aches and energy loss.

Martine became a household name when she played Tiffany Mitchell in EastEnders from 1995 to 1998.

The popular character met a tragic end when she was run over in the Square by Frank Butcher (Mike Reid) and died at the scene. Bianca Butcher (Patsy Palmer) named her daughter Tiffany (Maisie Smith) in memory of her friend.

Following her EastEnders departure, Martine appeared in the Christmas film Love Actually, which recently celebrated its 20th anniversary. Her character, Natalie, is a junior member of staff at 10 Downing Street who has a romance with the prime minister, played by Hugh Grant.

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