finally, claiming it

A few days ago, I wrote about my frustration dealing with my life right now. Thank you to everyone who, as my dear friend said in an email, “followed directions.” I think I can talk a little less emotionally now.

I finally got some answers on my fibromyalgia (it feels so weird to claim it like that.) The rheumatologist I saw did formally diagnose me with myofascial pain syndrome and fibromyalgia. I only really found this out by visiting the health center today to beg them to give me something for my pain – during my visit, the rheumy was rather vague about what he was going to call what I felt (“uhhh…it’s probably fibromyalgia, but I don’t want to put that diagnosis on you…”). They looked into my records, and thank God for the integrated systems between the school health center and the University hospital clinics because every doctor has access to every other doctor’s notes. There he saw the official diagnosis, and is helping me contact all the different people I need to get this under control and help me cope.

The medicine he gave me is pretty short-term – it’s highly addictive and withdrawl symptoms can be severe. And the effects, so far, are not long lasting. I took it at 4 and it allowed me to sleep until 8, which was pretty nice, considering I haven’t been getting any sleep. But now that I’m awake, the pain is back, and I’m not supposed to take anymore until midnight. So here I am.

I saw a new psychologist today, and I like her. The student health center is going to be hiring a new social-worker type person to help students with difficult cases, which they’ve decided mine is. But I feel good about the multitude of medical professionals that are involved in my care – a general practitioner, a psychiatrist, a psychologist, and I’ll be seeing many alternative/complementary treatment professionals, although not until mid-August. The GP is doing to write the needed letter to the diability resource center, to get me whatever accomodations I need to complete my studies.

So, I’m claiming it. I have fibromyalgia. This is a chronic illness that needs to be controlled but will not be cured. The name of the game will be to deal with the pain while trying to avoid mental and emotional suffering. I cried a lot today – with the doctors, by myself – but I feel a little better this evening. Thanks for listening.

5 thoughts on “finally, claiming it

  1. Im so sorry to hear this especially since I just accused you of getting old like I’m sure so many doctor’s did before me! Thembi the omniscient, right? But you know, in my personal experience, I havent had recurring pain but do I have a longterm health issue. I think that the key to managing that wack feeling of being ‘sick’ is remembering that everyone has something going on. No one is perfect fresh out of the box and so many amazing people are dealing with things we dont even know exist all day. Anyway, thats how my shrink kept me from being depressed about my health issues. Fake it til you make it and dont let the psychological pain add to the physical pain, which is hard enough to manage on its own! What I really want to see is you writing a book about your experiences someday…

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  2. it’s all good thembi, but i think you are still right. for me, it plays itself in me having compassion for others when i can’t quite understand their actions. like when somebody cuts me off on the road, i think, maybe they have a long-term illness or something else that is making them feel really crappy in the moment and they are in a rush and i should just send out peaceful relaxing vibes to them and hope karma will make those good vibes come back to me….cause everybody is going through something, sometimes we just don’t even know it! i’m blessed because at least now, i do 🙂

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