I have had a hard time trying to find more time to write lately, it seems that there is one family health issue after another, and I have had to step up to the plate for the past 6 weeks or so. This has been especially difficult because I suffer from a chronic pain illness that haunts my sleep, gnaws my joints, leaves my muscles screaming at me, and fogs my mind to boot.
I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia about 2 years ago, after a lifetime of pain, stiffness, and lack of mobility. The doctors don’t know why I am in pain all the time, when I was tested, poked, prodded, x-rayed, and generally stripped of any pretenses about my body they found nothing physically wrong. No joint damage, no autoimmune problems (like the rather unpleasant sensations associated with my body attacking/eating itself), no liver or hormonal issues, and my bones are remarkably healthy overall. So the pain was given the only name left after all that, Fibromyalgia.
In my own research after this diagnosis, I have found many theories as to what causes it, from an autoimmune response in my body to fatigue and stress, to broken pain receptors within my nervous system that misfire randomly, or something doctors can’t quite pin down. But no matter the cause, living with it is a bitch. There are days I can barely get off the couch, or lift my arms over my head. Sleeping is a ongoing battle every night, and I often have to drug myself in order to sleep deeply enough to awaken refreshed instead of blinking, and the alarm is going off to get up.
My body has been rebelling during the time that my family was sick, school or working, recovering from kidney stones or surgery by leaving me aching all day. Trying to sleep at night has become a battle I veer away from for as long as I can, knowing that no matter how tired I am, I will lie awake and in pain for hours before I can finally drift off. My muscles shout and groan at me for moving too much, as well as bitching when I sit to rest and relax because I can’t go anymore.
My husband had a vasectomy on the 17th, and has spent the remainder of May recovering from the pain. We expected him to be out of commission for a short time, but the doctor left him in such agony that he could barely walk for almost a week. Stairs and sitting was a trial, so he stayed upstairs with ice packs and Vicodin, so that our kids wouldn’t try to play with him and cause more pain. Combining this recovery period (that is still ongoing) with the 3 weeks of recovery from his double kidney stones has been a uphill battle that has left me wrung out.
I have been spending most of my waking moments caring for our 3 girls, running up food, ice packs, water bottles, and other supplies to my husband, as well as waking up my eldest for school and her daily medications for ADHD and Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Regardless of the amount of sleep I am able to get, I have to hit the ground running at 7 am everyday, often without the aid of the Goddess Caffeina’s wonderful elixirs of strong tea, coffee, or soda. Such imbibing is done joyfully though, with a toast to Her for the gifts given to overworked parents.
All of this activity has helped me see the limits of my capabilities, and wave goodbye to them as I run after another chore, meal prep, my children’s needs, my husband’s needs, and collapse into bed at night. I know that I do not begrudge the work I put into caring for my family, please don’t misunderstand, it is just as exhausted as I am, I write with little filters left.
I have had a few moments to work on a craft or project, mostly sewing during nap times (while I hold my youngest as she nurses), I made my eldest a dream pillow, and finished my collection’s bag. These small moments for myself have helped keep me sane, and now that my husband is on the mend, he has promised me a long walk by myself and something to spoil me. I have my sights set on slowly finishing my crafts and getting a chance to dedicate my drum.