Saving my own life. I do realize that sounds a bit dramatic, after all, Fibromyalgia doesn’t kill people. It does, however, ruin your life in a lot of ways. I often compare it to being a battered woman, you never know what kind of a day you’re going to have. You live in fear, unable to make plans, never knowing what will happen on any given day.
One fact many are not aware of, the number one cause of death in people with Fibromyalgia is suicide. Horrifying. I think they just get to the point that they cannot take the pain anymore, let alone all the other stuff that comes with it. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it ruins your life, but it certainly changes everything you once were, and everything you know about yourself.
The thing about fibro is, it’s a nerve disorder, so it affects your body everywhere you have nerves, starting with headaches, brain fog, and jaw problems, and working its way down to leg and foot edema, tingling, and muscle spasms. Since I found out I have it, or even before when it was a maybe I guess, I have made jokes that the only symptom I don’t have, out of like 60, is irregular periods, because I don’t have a uterus, then I found out it can cause erectile dysfunction, so I said, “Look here’s another symptom I don’t have!” My daughter, being the funny girl she is, said, “I don’t know mom, can you get an erection?” Smartypants.
I have always had pain, sounds dramatic, it’s just true. I had surgery as a kid for scoliosis, I don’t remember ever not having pain, but that was super mild compared to now. I injured my SI at work in 2009 and have been in big pain ever since, that was still localized, to my right SI and lower back, then when I developed fibro I have pain everywhere, it feels like the day after a major beating. Sometimes one area will hurt so intensely that I look for a bruise, or a cut, or something, then I remember, nope, I have a stupid disease.
I had a doctor appt. this week, new doc, so he wanted me to bring in all the meds and supplements I take, holy hannah there are a lot! My prescription pain pills, muscle relaxers, and anti-spasm medications, plus probiotics, turmeric, cayenne fruit, St John’s Wort, fish oil, Super B Complex, vitamins E, D3, and C, Calcium, multivitamin, biotin, melatonin, ranitidine, bee pollen, apple cider vinegar, honey, L-Lysine, L-Arginine, I think that’s it. I had to pack them in a huge bag. This doctor is very well-informed about supplements in place of other medications, and agreed with my choices, I like that in a person, but I was still a little overwhelmed by how much space I needed.
I also practice meditation, ayurvedic breathing, pilates, oil pulling, whatever I can find that may help. I have eliminated processed foods, soda, corn syrup, all corn products, and many others. My health has become a full-time job in itself, and I work every day to be as healthy as I can. Every day I learn new things about foods, supplements, and practices to help me feel at my best. My best is a whole lot different than it was a couple years ago, but all in all, it’s not so bad. I know now how bad it can get, so this is good. I still have bad days, days when I sleep too much or can’t sleep at all, days that my hands are just not functional, that the pain is overwhelming, etc. I am very blessed that I have a venue to learn, grow, and share knowledge with the general public thanks to this page, and I never forget that. A good example of how much life varies, it took my 3 days to write this, just too tired.
I think that major changes often relate to saving your own life, either you roll with the punches and change accordingly, or you get bitter and a part of you dies. I didn’t want to do that. I want to enjoy my time as much as I am able, so I chose to accept and embrace my new normal. Faith, for me, has made all the difference. Just because I am unable to continue my chosen career does not mean life is over, it means I had to find a new one. So far my new career is my own health, with a little bit of writing and hanging out with you all. 90% of the time I am happy and content, that’s enough for me, in fact, I would say its pretty darn good.