How Fibromyalgia Affected My Life
How it All Began
In December of 2012 I had surgery and a tragic life event. Those two things are what cause fibromyalgia to rear its ugly head. Within a few months, I saw myself deteriorate. The pain started out not so bad. Nothing that Aleve wouldn't help . As time went on though it became apparent that something was wrong.
I remember that my old nurse practitioner had asked me if I had ever been diagnosed with Fibro and I told her no. Nothing more ever became of that conversation.
Don't wait until you are totally disabled to get help.
When Life Goes out of Whack
Today I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and I have to say for many years I truly did not believe in this aweful disabling disease. I felt that doctors just put a name on your pain because they could not find anything else wrong with you. Well today I succummed to the diagnosis because nothing else has been working for me. Now having a name to my total horrific pain that I have been experiencing has given me a reason to fight. I refuse to let this disease keep me down or make me disabled.
My pain had become so bad that I could not sleep, could not hardly get around and no test pointed anything wrong with me. Of course I have been stressed but seriously this was something that was beyond any stress. Over the course of a year I went from being an active woman to hardly able to even mop my own kitchen floors. My old doctor was just filling me full of medication just to not have to deal with me, sitting in the hallway writing my prescriptions, handing it to me through the door and charging my insurance for an office visit and me a copay. I felt belittled and actually very pissed off.
So how am I going to deal with it, something I never believed in? I'm gonna give it my all, believe that my new doctor is great and is willing to help me understand my disease, take the medications he has prescribed and keep on moving. After all I have always been a fighter, never let anything get me down and by God this is not going to get me down either.
When you live in pain every single day, you just want it to stop. You want it to end but with this there is no end. You fight every day of your life to stay mobile, to not give in, to try to be as normal on the outside as you can while suffering on the inside so badly.
Now I can move on with a name to this awful pain I have, try to not stress and try to not let it get the best of me.
Just because you look okay on the outside doesn't mean you're okay on the inside
A Good Doctor Who Will Listen is the Charm
My old doctor had to go. No matter what she was not trying to find out what was really wrong. I was scared I had MS. So I went to a new primary and what a difference.
My new doctor didn't question my need for pain medication because he believed me that I was in pain. He gave me Tramadol for the pain because I don't want to start on narcotics. He did not question my need for anxiety medication because he knew I was anxious. He listened, he cared, he spent the time with me I needed and did not rush me out like a herd of cattle. I needed that. He explained to me about my disease and why it occurs and that there are no test to confirm a diagnosis but that you have to know that what I am experiencing is real.
So now I am taking the bull by the horns to get my life back to normal, as normal as I can and to pray that I will prevail and that God will help me in my situation. I know I will have good days and bad days but I will never let it consume my life to the point that I will let it take over me.
Sometimes your beliefs have to change because of your situation. I didn't want to believe that I had anything that I could not understand. I wanted answers because there was something wrong. When those words came out of his mouth I cringed, I did not want to believe what he was telling me.
After all I did not believe in it did I? After he spent an hour going over this disease and how it happens and what is actually going on, I can now rest knowing that there is help available to me. I am sure that other sufferers of this disease are probably yelling at me for my disbelief but a long time ago I was told by a doctor that this was a label that they placed on people because they could not find out what was wrong with them. I held on to that belief for all these years. Well now I do believe in this horrible disease that has wreaked havoc on my body, mind and spirit. It has been a nightmare to say the least but I will get better enough to live a normal life.
I do not know how people live with this awful pain that I have experienced. I actually have a very high tolerance for pain so when I say it hurts you can best believe that it hurts. So now life goes on.
If your doctor doesn't believe you find a new one.
What is Being Done for Fibromyalgia Through Research
The NIAMS sponsors research to help understand fibromyalgia and find better ways to diagnose, treat, and prevent it. Researchers are studying:
- Why people with fibromyalgia have increased sensitivity to pain.
- Medicines and behavioral treatments.
- Whether there is a gene or genes that make a person more likely to have fibromyalgia.
- The use of imaging methods, such as magnetic resonate imaging (MRI), to better understand fibromyalgia.
- Inflammation in the body and its relationship to fibromyalgia.
- Nondrug therapies to help reduce pain.
- Methods to improve sleep in people with fibromyalgia
Get Treatment Early
If you have been having a lot of muscle pain, then get to your doctor (if they believe in fibromyalgia) and get on a treatment plan. No one has to live in chronic pain. There are new treatments out their that help fibromyalgia patients get back to life.
My pain is tolerable now. I take Cymbalta, Elavil and Klonopin at night before I go to bed. I also became very depressed and started having even more anxiety so I am on Lexapro also.
It's been a really life changing ride but it is tolerable now.