It’s been kindly pointed out to me that I’ve been relatively quiet for some time now, so I thought there’s no better way to break the writing fast than to share another insight about life with Fibromyalgia and how it’s pretty intimately tied to my writing capability and capacity. I’ve written fairly extensively about FM here , so I’ll spare everyone the replay and move on to current events and try not to make it sound too whiney.
Making a definitive list of symptoms for an FM patient is something akin to nailing jello to a tree, you may get the nail hammered in but the jello won’t hang there long enough for you to appreciate the sight. It’s a cyclical condition with highs and lows, on a really good high point you can almost feel ‘normal,’ while a really low point can leave you with no more energy than it takes to get out bed and not enough to keep you vertical for long. I’ve had two very low periods separated with a high that didn’t even reach medium, which is why I’ve been fairly quiet lately.
Another change that is really odd is a switch in migraine symptoms from the standard migraine (painful) to a more subdued form that leaves you feeling off and screws with your vision. It really gets creative when I’m trying to read a computer monitor, you wind up trying to focus between little blobs of light. Adding to my ocular irregularities is my vision as a whole is changing, I have to take off my glasses to read fine print, so this adds a whole new field of specialist that I get to play lab rat for. Oh well, it seems like I wind up spending my time with new doctors explaining how FM really works, most have only read about it in texts and not dealt with it themselves.
Never has the phrase ‘know your limitations,’ been more important than to one with FM. You can push yourself, but a few days of doing that can leave you a wreck for a couple of weeks. Sometimes you get through the day with a couple of short periods of lying down and resting, other days you get up for short periods of activity between rests. Listen to your body, because if you don’t after a while it’ll quit listening to you and force you to do what it needs. There is nothing worse than wondering what people around you think of the time you have to spend horizontal while they run around living more normal lives, but the guilt you might feel is nothing compared the condition you’ll put yourself into if you ignore what you need. A little guilt is nothing compared to incapacitating yourself.
You have no choice but to be sick, but you can do it intelligently and minimize your symptoms, sometimes a little and other times quite a bit. It takes discipline, and it takes you explaining your situation carefully to those around you. Learn all that you can about how FM affects you personally, and then take the time to educate your family and friends, and most especially your doctors. They may have the degree in medicine, but you should be the world’s foremost expert on you.
© 2010, Tim Boothby. All rights reserved.