This was a phrase that was used some time ago on a different site. Can't really remember who or where, but it's fitting. I've found that not many people know what Fibro is. (Fibro's my affectionate pet name for Fibromyalgia.)
What is Fibromyalgia?
It's a condition characterized by body-wide long term pain. You have tender points in your muscles, joints, tendons, etc. It's also linked to anxiety, depression, sleep problems, stiffness, and fatigue.
Now, those who've known me before college KNOW that I am a Drama Queen. I am, it's true. And I think that has contributed greatly to people not taking me seriously. But things really have changed for me since leaving home. I suppose I've withdrawn from the outside world. I used to be so proud of the strength that I possessed. I was a monster! I could fight anyone and anything. I knew no fear. I miss that Whitney. I wonder where she is when I need her.. Like now. As a child I associated a cut, any odd lump, or even a strange bruise of unknown origin with death. I would worry about whether it was cancer or some awful infection that would take my life. But I can't ever really remember exaggerating pain. Now that doesn't mean I didn't. I remember once when I was five years old, I was playing with Tiffany (my older sister) and her beloved Barbies. She had ALL the latest accessories, including a Barbie baby bottle and a roller skate. As a tomboy I have NO idea why she let me around those things, but she did. I wasn't playing with Ken and Barbie and telling so mushy gushy kid story, nope! Not me! I was playing with the bottle and skate, sticking the bottle into the skate. And then it got stuck. (Reminder both were small and plastic, so yeah.) Tiffany, to say the least, was infuriated. Her seven-year-old sassy self to me "I don't care what you do, but you better get that thing out of there!" Poor little five year old me, what was I to do. Well, I did what any self-sufficient strong-willed kid would do. I went to the kitchen and somehow got my hands on a knife. Looking back I see a huge glinting knife, but I was small, so that fact cannot be proven. I stuck the knife into the skate and began to pry the bottle loose. It was coming loose, slowly. I was began to smell my redemption so I pried a little harder, shoving the knife deeper. And like any good knife would, it sliced through the plastic, and into my waiting hand below. All hell broke loose for little old me. I just KNEW I was going to die. I was screaming and begging my parents to get me to the hospital quickly. Looking back to this day, I remember really feeling as if my death were imminent. So I know I wasn't faking. I believed it. I cried through bath time, I cried at bed time. And that's all I remember. But I'm still here, so I reckon I survived it. To be honest, I don't even recall a drop of blood. (Just an example of how dramatic I was)
But since that time a lot had changed about me. I KNOW for a fact that I have a high pain tolerance. Incredibly high. I can withstand the yanking of my hair, I can take the punch of many and not falter. I am strong, and take pride in that. Even growing up, I told my mother of growing pains, but only because I thought they hinted to an underlying deadly illness. Today, it takes a TON of pain for me to admit it. I'm not proud to admit that I'm often in pain. Sometimes I avoid the limp to appease it just to hide the fact that it's there. I use often loosely, because something ALWAYS hurts, it's just a matter of how badly. Some days it's hardly there. And I hardly notice it, but others it takes all of my strength and more to get to the bathroom. There have even been days where I couldn't do that alone. Doctors always say "Walking helps it." Well people, I live on a college campus and walk almost everywhere. Even getting to my car is a long walk! Walking hasn't appeased my pain. I think it's fueled it. I have been doing research, and see now that there are others like me! It makes me feel like I'm not making up this great amount of pain. Like I'm validated in wanting help. I've found some who use wheelchairs, some scooters, some walkers or canes; but only on their worst days of for mall trips or to places like Disneyland and stuff. I read the story of a girl who was in so much pain she just quit walking. I've wanted to do that SO many times.. But the ridicule I'd face from my family and peers has forced me to suffer through some pretty terrible pain.
I've used a wheelchair in Target, and when I couldn't handle the airport alone for the pain I asked for a wheelchair escort. I was so humiliated that I fought tears the entire time. I didn't even tell my mom. Can you blame me? At the time it seemed that no one understood my pain. But I know I'm not alone. And I'm not giving up, see I'm going to keep walking on the days that I can. But I won't be bedridden, and I'm tired of pushing myself so hard that I end up having to take multiple naps a day just to recover. I'm going to find something to help. Even if I have to get a job and pay for it out of my own pocket. I shouldn't have to be ashamed to utilize something that makes my life a little easier. I'm so tired of hiding everything.
a hurting Whitney and a restless Austin