Fibromyalgia ~ Just Another Curve Ball
I realize it has been a very long time since I have posted to the blog. Life has a way of throwing curve balls. And I can honestly say I have been thrown quite a few since I last posted. One of those curve balls is Fibromyalgia. I have suffered from this for many years, but just received my official diagnosis from my Rheumatologist this past year. It has taken a while to come to terms with this diagnosis, since for the longest time it was thought I had something much more serious. I have been through the mill. I will not go into detail but some of the previous trains of thought were lupus, multiple sclerosis & pulmonary hypertension. Then this diagnosis, which to me was a shameful one at first. After all isn’t this the syndrome that so many doctors do not even believe exist? But after much research and being left basically to my own conclusions…I have uncovered much information. It is real, VERY.
I have recently suffered through numerous flares. I am in a flare as I write this. What this means for me is pain and I mean a LOT of pain. All over body pain, as if I woke up with an unending flu. Debilitating fatigue, that once you hit it, it is like a brick wall and an inability to
get a good nights sleep. Among many other unpleasant symptoms. In short fibromyalgia is serious business. It is difficult to manage on the days I am not in a flare. But in the middle of a full blown flare, it sometimes feels as if there will never be a light at the end of the tunnel.
Tonight I was making Christmas mints with my 8 year old. This is an annual tradition that my parents started many years ago when my sister and I were little. It is special to us as a family. I have carried on the tradition with my own children, using the very same mint molds that my mother used.
What does this have to do with Fibromyalgia you ask? Everything! Fibromyalgia affects every part of my life. If I want to do something special these days, I have to plan for it! Gone are the days of spur of the moment fun. I’m sure many have heard of the ‘spoon theory’, if you haven’t Google it. It is the best way to explain what living with Fibromyalgia, Lupus and other invisible illnesses are like.
So back to the Christmas mints. I was kneading the mint fondant and every time I kneaded it a bit, I hurt. I mean REALLY hurt. I’m talking lots of physical pain. Pain in my hands, my arms, my shoulder, neck, and upper back. And then the fatigue…a whole other animal entirely, it just weighs on you like a ton of bricks, until you give in and rest. And it dawned on me. I shouldn’t be doing this! Something I love to do…but yet causing me so much pain. I found myself wondering, when did it come down to having to choose weather to hurt a lot and do something I enjoy, or hurt less and not get to enjoy it at all. I will take the hurting with the enjoyment over skipping special times, but it doesn’t make it any easier. Now that we are through making the mints, I still hurt, and the pain will continue for quite a while. Was it worth it? Absolutely! It is all about choosing what is worth it and what is not. Time spent with my children is priceless and I will not let Fibromyalgia steal that away from me.