oday is Fibromyalgia Awareness day. As most of you know, I have fibro so it's something that's "near and dear" to me. But before you roll your eyes or think this is just another "pity blog," it's not. I've decided to try to face this entry with a little facts, a little music and a little humor.
You can find lots of info about fibromyalgia on the web, so much so that it will confuse the hell out of you. If you'd like the "crib notes" version of the basics of fibromyalgia there is a fibromyalgia fact sheet that you can read that may help you to understand.
Though I can't say that I totally agree with the message at the end of this video, it's pretty much what fibro's about.
Before I get to the humor I found this letter that I'd like to share. A Letter From My Fibromyalgia
To Dee: (I've changed the name here to my name)
Congratulations! You have been selected to be the host for F-I-B-R-O-M-Y-A-L-G-I-A. You will begin to experience many or all of these symptoms - and may even deal with several of them at the same time.
*Pain can be anywhere you can imagine. We are equal opportunity destroyers; therefore we will choose many places for you to experience pain. We have even devised many different types of pain - it could be aching, stabbing, throbbing, tingling, burning, gripping, or cramping. We are continually improving our repertoire of pain categories, so updates are to be expected.
*Dizziness. This can be accompanied by nausea, mental confusion, ringing in the ears, vomiting, loss of coordination, and sensations of spinning, rocking, or shaking. We try to simulate the experience of riding a never-ending roller coaster to satisfy your adventurous spirit. No safety harnesses required, and you have no choice of when the coaster ride starts, ends, or how fast it goes.
*Extreme fatigue. Now remember, this is not just being "tired". We will suddenly "pull your plug", so to speak, and you will have NO energy at all. Even dressing or taking a shower will be too daunting of a task for you to complete. And because we like surprises, we will NOT give you any advance warning, so you could be in the middle of the grocery store, at work, playing with you kids, or trying to clean the house.
*Poor balance, lack of coordination. Let's just say you may walk or talk like you are drunk - even if you haven't had any alcohol recently. And for those of you who have never indulged in alcohol, you are now going to understand what it is like to be drunk AND to have a hangover.
*Forgetting, losing, dropping things. These are just a few of the perks of your condition. You will learn to expect them, but never to enjoy them.
In addition to the symptoms above, we also want to eliminate some things from your crowded lifestyle. Here are a few of the things which will be taken away from you now that you are chosen to have a chronic condition:
*The ability to stand or walk for longer than 15 minutes without experiencing pain in your feet, ankles, knees, or legs.
*The ability to sit for longer than 10 minutes without experiencing cramping in your legs & butt, or shooting pains in your back.
*The ability to complete any task which requires more than 10 minutes of concentration, multi-step activities or long-term projects will take 3-5 times longer then average.
*The ability to play and run with your children (or pet) like you did before.
*The ability to have a "normal" social life.
*The ability to accumulate sick days at work/ school to earn the perfect attendance bonus.
As indicated previously, this condition is in constant flux and more symptoms will be added as we deem necessary. There is no warranty guarantee, technical support, or customer service available.
Your Chronic Condition - Fibromyalgia
And now for the humor part of the entry, what? You thought I forgot??
You May Have Fibromyalgia If...
you forget spending the whole New Year's Evening with your husband!
you are in your own car, and stop for gas, however, you can't remember where the gas tank is located until another customer shows you!
you complete your whole grocery shopping excursion while wearing a soft-blue-gel ice pack on top of your head, while your husband follows 3 steps behind you!
you are constantly doing 'head' counts of your own children, and pets!
you leave every day for work using the front door, but must climb back into your home using a window after your work day is over!
you rub a whole tube of Ben Gay all through your scalp to help your migraine! (Bad, Bad idea!!!)
you tell the same story more than 3 times to the same person!
you make your two monthly mortgage payments to the wrong bank EVERY month, having to go back out the next day to switch them!
you go to the movie store with your husband to choose a movie, and after picking the one of your choice, he politely tells you the two of you saw it the previous weekend!
you drive 60 miles for your monthly support meeting... only to find out, you are a week early! (I don't go to support meetings but I can't tell you how many times I've shown up for work once, three hours early for my shift...on my day off, I've shown up early for dr's appointments, on the wrong day, etc.
If you've made it to the bottom of this post, then you really are my friend lol. Thanks for listening. I think that more people should know what fibromyalgia is about. Not many people understand it.
I treasure my friends here, it seems that list is shrinking by the minute but that's ok. Weed 'em out I say!!
One of the things that most people with fibro will tell you is that they get through it all with the help of their family and friends. Even if it's just having someone to listen or in my case, read.
Thank you so much for sticking with me!