Sometimes this is exactly how I feel. Like I’m out there all alone on a branch hanging on for dear life. Hanging on to hope.
I’ve been somewhat absent from Print-Sense for the last while. In fact I feel like I have simply been absent from a lot of things. Throughout summer and into fall I was incapable of handling much more than my family, my classroom and myself. Following an allergic reaction to an antibiotic in the spring, I felt I just didn’t bounce back. In fact there was no bounce at all. It felt like I was a flattened piece gum left carelessly on the sidewalk to be stepped on by life.
I went to the doctor and after a barrage of tests he diagnosed me with Fibromyalgia. Now at the risk of sounding selfish, in light of the many other horrid afflictions and ailments out there, I have to say that the diagnosis sucks. Yes, I understand that it is not degenerative. Yes, I understand that it will not kill me. But I have also come to understand over the past few months that Fibromyalgia carries with it a stigma that results in wrinkled noses, and vague sympathies when you tell others why you just don’t feel yourself. Often people try to help with suggestions of eating better, exercising more and comments about mind over matter.
Bottom line, Fibromyalgia is isolating.
Have I sulked a bit; yes. Have I perhaps wallowed in self-pity, unfortunately I have to admit, yes. I like to think that I am a pretty strong person, but this has blown the wind out of my proverbial sails so to speak. Since August, I feel like I’ve sat there in my little boat waiting for the wind to pick up. It hasn’t. I have had good days, I have had bad days and I have had days I’m so exhausted I want to vomit. Good, bad or ugly I’ve just sat there. Sat there waiting for things to get better.
As a result I have hunkered down and pulled myself into the folds of my family. I go to work during the day and then come home and happily tuck myself into the love and care of my daughters and husband. As always my husband has been the shoulder I cry on, the one who worries and my biggest advocate. As he too has struggled to make sense of this confounded disease he researched, researched and researched some more.
A few weeks back he blew a little wind into my sails. He found a study that linked the misdiagnosis of Fibromyalgia to Lyme’s Disease. As a result, I found myself once again sitting in the doctor’s office. This time I took control of things. I didn’t wait for his pat comments of, “You just have to get used to this,” or “Just get more sleep, lower your stress level, do some yoga and you will feel better.” I asked for the test and didn’t back down when he point-blank told me it wasn’t Lyme’s and that my husband should stop diagnosing from the internet. I got my paperwork and happily left his office.
Last week the doctor called and informed me that my test result was equivocal. This means they can’t 100% say the results are positive or negative. Hmmmm. That gives one something to think about doesn’t it? As a result, my blood sample has been sent to the Centre for Disease Control for further testing.
So here I am waiting and hanging on like that little leaf. Hanging on to the hope that it isn’t Fibromyalgia.