Before fibro I worked up to two jobs, raised three boys alone, and kept a clean house. Now I’m in pain every day, all day. I have trouble thinking, talking—can’t even finish a sentence most of the time. Not to mention the exhaustion. Getting out of bed is hard. Things I took for granted now are a fight. I hate to leave my house. I feel like everyone is staring at me. I can’t even straighten up most days.
People ask, “How can you go from being social and outgoing to never wanting to leave your house?” And, oh yes, the depression and the feeling of worthlessness. Fibro killed the old me and left me to deal with this new way of life. Luckily, it didn’t kill my spirit. I love being a member of MyFibroTeam. It has changed my life. I no longer feel alone. I have met so many awesome people who know exactly how I feel.
I visit the MyFibroTeam site every day. I like to post happy memes or cheerful posts. I have made some really great friends. They really care about me. They worry if I don’t check in, and I do the same. Since I found this site, it's changed my life. When I discuss my pain or depression with “non-fibros” they just don’t get the daily hell I go through. When I post a question or if I've had a bad day there's always someone to talk to. I get to vent and whine and just let all of my emotions out. I never feel judged or stupid. I always get love and understanding. When someone wants me on their team or tells me how I've helped them feel better I feel like I have a purpose in life, like I’m needed.
If I didn’t have this support I don't know where I’d be. I was so lonely and angry and disappointed in myself. Like my body is totally letting me down. My husband is so awesome, but he is so used to me doing so much. Now doing so little, I push myself to be normal...to find out where I fit in this world now. I get so frustrated when I have to try to explain why I can’t do it. Why I can’t go, why I’m letting everyone down, even when I’m trying the best I can. I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired. Smiling when the pain is beyond 10. Trying not to cry or show my weaknesses. Or hearing, “You look tired. Are you ok?” I want to scream, “No, I’m not ok.”
My body is screaming with pain. I’m so tired. I can't explain how I’m sweating when it's 30 degrees and I’m standing outside. How can I function on little to no sleep? Hello, obviously I’m not very well. Then I apply for disability because I mean, would you hire me? I'm a mess. Only to be told I'm not sick enough. “We think you can hold down a full-time job.” Ugh. So all of this and more is how fibro has changed my life. So I take all of these emotions to my psychiatrist who is not as interested in why I feel this way as much as what meds can I put you on to “feel better.”
I was taking Cymbalta for a while, and it helped some of my pain and my mood. But like anything my body got used to it. I knew I just need a stronger dose and I told the shrink that’s what I thought. “No I don't think that will do it. Let’s take you off and put you on Prozac.” Well the pain relief I was getting from the Cymbalta came back and the Prozac made me crazy. So now I’m going nuts and my pain increased. I called the shrink and told her what was going on. I’m now taking more Cymbalta.
So I get to share all of this with my amazing friends. I get priceless advice. I get love and understanding. They truly get me; they've been through times like this. We share sad stories, funny anecdotes, and information on medicines and other helpful hints. I would recommend to anyone with fibro to join this site. You won't regret it. You don't have to do this alone.
This article was written by MyFibroTeam member Jerri as part of the Member Spotlight Series. Jerri is married with three sons and eight grandkids.
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