Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Carbon Monoxide Scare

This Christmas I am feeling very blessed that Ed, the boys, and I are all Ok and healthy after a Carbon Monoxide scare.  The really scarey part was there was no reason for it to happen.

Monday night, Tuesday early morning, Nicholas and I woke up with severe headaches.  I know my shoulders, neck, and head hurt horribly.  I could not understand why I hurt at that time as I had taken a Vicoden for my ankle pain for that on going sprain.  When Jacob woke up in the morning he also had a headache.  Something inside me triggered a thought to call Ed at work.  He was on his way home as he did not feel good either.

After a bit of thought I put it all together.  As soon as Ed got home I had him install a smoke/carbon monoxide detector we had laying around to replace our old ones.  Within a short while it was going off.  Ed started checking everything out and finds it must be the water heater as nothing else was on and doesn't have pilot lights.  He shut it off and opened the house. 

I went to get my hair done and I picked up another detector as precation.  So far all is well and OK, just that I am shook up at how close we could have come to losing our lives.  So the inconvenience of no hot water is OK.  We turn it on for a quick shower and that is it.  Since the part is almost as the ones we saw online we will be buying a new water heater. 

The carbon monoxide poisoning, I guess for better of any other word, is causing me to flare some.  My upper body is hurting and tight.   A bit unusual for me as I tend to feel more pain in my back, hips, and legs, so I know it is relate to the carbon monoxide.  Also my exhaustion is horrible.  If we were not out looking for parts today and Christmas shopping I would have slept a lot I am sure.

So I beg of you to put in carbon monoxide detectors as well as smoke alarms as recommend.  It is not something you want to take lightly.  There are programs if you can't afford them.  Take the time and install them for your families safety.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Boys Christmas Break

Today is the boys first official day off school for the Holiday/Christmas Break.  Friday was their last day until January 3rd.  As of now it seems these two weeks are going to be very long.  Hard to believe Christmas is only a few days away the way Nicholas, Jacob, and Caleb are acting.  Nicholas being the worst.

I am very frustrated with their behavior.  I am really trying to get organized and do things to get ready for the holidays.  I still have Christmas shopping to do, laundry has piled up again as the washer is not working quite right still, though today I am trying to do some anyhow.  The boys trash the house faster then it can be cleaned.

Nicholas and I are fighting over stupid things.  He won't do the simplest task.  I just chased a 12 year old through the house trying to catch him so I could talk to him and try to get through to him.  Instead of that, I manage to get a sharp pain in my ankle and my lower back is throbbing.

All this pain from the ankle sprain and then compound it with the Fibromyalgia it is overwhelming.  Then add the holidays, shopping, get togethers, etc., I see a breakdown coming both emotionally and physically.  My darling, wonder husband Ed is doing all he can to help, but he is working a lot of hours and should not have to deal with this all as I am home. 

I have not wanted to do anything for the holidays.  No cookies, decorating (only tree this year), parties, etc.  Some of it is the boys and their attitudes and some of it is the constant pain.  The stress is making the Fibro worse as well as the cold weather.  Here in S.E. Michigan it has been colder then normal.  Then the ankle and the stupid walking boot cast I am wearing makes me walk wrong and makes the back hurt a lot.  I was watching Christmas with the Kranks last night and that is exactly how I feel. 

I really do just want to skip it all.  It  would be so much easier on me.  Though unlike the movie, I would not throw together a party just because my child came home last minute and I had a cruise planned and paid for.  Sorry, you may feel that is mean, but without notice that is what would happen.  I would be bye-bye.  If only I could do that this year.  I'd be happy, relaxed, and would feel better on the cruise in the warmth.

Reality is I can't skip it all.  I have cut out what I can.  Lists of gifts to buy cut, no baking, no decorating.  Maybe I'd feel better if I could do that, but the boys just don't deserve or allow it.  Living room was cleaned up last night, trashed this morning.  My only hope is Ed has a week off between the holidays and maybe I can talk some friends into helping me, though I am so embarrassed, but I need to get help.  It is OK to ask for help. 

I may see if the boys can go somewhere for a few days to give me a break.  I love them so much, but it is so hard to fight all the time and deal with attitudes and defiance.  I was ready to have Santa skip our house, but I can't do it.  I just can't.  Beyond that I feel I am doomed to all this forever or at least a good 15-20 years.  I think I need to rely on help and just take it easy.  Rest of today will now be babying ankle and hoping washer holds out to get a few things washed at least, as well as doing my Avon Administrative work.

I hope you are having better luck with your children.  Please post tips if you have them.  I will find someway to have peace as I need to for my health and for a happy family.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Gifts For Those With Fibromyalgia or Other Chronic Pain

Fibromyalgia not only effects those who have the condition but those that are around the inflicted person as well.  With the holidays upon us you may be looking for gifts to give your loved one with Fibromyalgia.  Why not consider things that will help your beloved feel better?  With Fibromyalgia many won't take the time to relax and take care of themselves so great gifts are gifts that will help the person reduce stress, relax, and have a sense of overall wellness.

Since I have suffered with Fibromyalgia for several years I have found things that I like that I will suggest to give as gifts.  I also read on in the Fibromyalgia Community that listed gifts for those in pain.  So between myself and this list I have compiled a list to help you shop for that person you care about care for their Fibromyalgia symptoms.

Here is my list of gifts for Fibromyalgia and/or other Chronic Pain condition:
  • Heat Wraps (small or large)  I received a full body microwavable wrap from my husband for Christmas one year.  It is probably the most used item in my Fibro arsenal.  He bought it for me at Origins.  I also have a small one for the neck I purchased at The Body Shop. 
  • Massage is always great.  I do recommend you check that the massage therapist has experience with Fibromyalgia and Myofascia massage.  People with Fibro need a gentle touch and there are techniques to help the patient feel better and not cause more pain.
  • Heated Mattress Cover is again something I have and use nightly in the cooler months.  I turn it on a bit before I climb into bed and it is warm and cozy and doesn't stiffen my body.  I also use it in the morning to loosen up the muscles a bit before I get up.
  • Maid Service.  Even a one time deep cleaning would be a great help.  Sometimes we just can't get down to clean the floor trim, or things up high like lights and fans.  If you can't afford to purchase the service make a coupon for your Fibro friend  or family member for you to let them have the day off and you clean the house for them.
  • E-Reader or Kindle.  Many have times when a book is too heavy to hold for long periods of time and since these are light it can help when they are down.  They can escape the pain by reading a great novel of their choice.  It is something they can take with them to their many doctor appointments as well.
  • Bath Pillows are also great.   Soaking in a hot bath soothes the body, but if your head is not supported it can cause pain.  With Fibro again we need things to help us with daily tasks.  I have one of these and it does really help when I need to sit back in the warmth of a hot bath.
  • Warm Cozy Socks.  Great stocking stuffer idea.  Those with Fibro are always looking to stay warm.  Socks can really warm a person up and a nice, non tight, comfortable fabric are great.  I know I have a large collection and when I am home it is all I wear and I buy more whenever I get the chance.
  • DVDs of their favorite movies.  When in pain sometimes you can't do anything but lay there.  It is great to get lost in a great comedy or edge of your seat movie. Or another option is to up their cable or dish subscription to get Showtime or HBO if they don't have it.
  • CDs or ITunes card for their favorite soothing and relaxing music.  Or even and MP3 player if they don't have one.  As they sit in the tub relaxing or burning a scented candle it is another way to escape the pain some.

Some of these I have, some I would like.  When you are gift giving for a person with Fibromyalgia or other Chronic Pain conditions I think it is important to keep that in mind.  People who suffer pain and exhaustion feel guilty quite often if they take time for themselves and by giving a gift for them to do it they feel less guilty.  I know this from my life and experiences.  I want to put my boys and husband, extended family and friends first, but there are times when I need to think of me first so I can put others first.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Grape Goo

With having Fibromyalgia and 3 boys in lots of activities I am always looking for easy recipes to throw together for potlucks.  I received this recipe from a Scout's mom I had in my Den, with my oldest son Nicholas.   It is a hit everywhere and it is something the boys can help with or even make if I am down.  It is always a hit and I am constantly asked for the recipe.

Grape Goo Recipe
(A.K.A. Grape Salad)

2 big bunches of red grapes (cut large one in 1/2)
2 (8oz.) blocks of cream cheese
1 cup sour cream
1 Tbs. vanilla extract
1/2 cup white sugar
1 1/2 cups brown sugar (I use dark as it is my preference, light is fine)
4 oz. pecan bits

Mix cream cheese, sour cream, vanilla, and white sugar.  Add Grapes.  Mix well and place in a 9x13 inch glass dish.  Mix brown sugar and pecans together.  Spread over top of Goo.  Gently pat down.  Chill in fridge overnight or it can be served right away.

I have used full fat, low fat, and fat free cream cheese without any notice in flavor or how much others like it.  That is up to you.  I try to cut the calories when I can.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

I Want to Skip Christmas

We all have up and down years for the holiday season.  Some have it much worse then others.  I am blessed I have a family and great friends to celebrate with, but last year I was suffering from Gallbladder attack, thinking it was my Fibromyalgia.  This year I have a severe sprain ankle that I am wearing a walking boot because of that is throwing my walk off and hence my back and sending me into flares if I am up too much.

I am really in the Bah Humbug mood this year.  Only decorations I have put out this year is a tree.  I don't feel like shopping at all and even if I don't have a lot to buy I love watching others doing their shopping especially last minute.  I find it hilarious.  Baking may also not happen again this year.  Though I really love sugar cookies made the way my mom made them when I was a kid so I hope to get the energy for them at least.

If if was just me or Ed and I this would all be OK.  It is not just the two of us.  We have 3 boys who are growing so fast and I feel that they are missing out on some of the fun of the holidays because of me.  My boys love baking the cookies and helping decorate.  One thing I did do this year is let them help decorate the tree, which in the past I would not let them as I collect blown glass ornaments.  I felt bad about everything and they are older now so I let them put on the ones that were not "special" to me. 

This time of year drags down the most energetic person, but if you are suffering with Fibromyalgia it is so much worse.  One day of shopping, if you can do the whole day, can put you down for a week.  Baking and standing in the kitchen is so hard.  The running between family and friends is fun and you want to see them, but it takes a toll. 

People with Fibromyalgia really need to learn to choose what is most important when it comes to the Holidays.  Pick a few things that really are special to you at the holiday and focus on that.  Try to eat well and take care of yourself, though I am a firm believer in enjoying food and drink at the holidays, but in between events try to do the good things your body needs.  Lots of water and healthy food. 

Don't procrastinate or you will feel overwhelmed.  I am there right now.  Bills must be paid first so I can't get out and buy gifts here and there like normal.  I have decided I am giving gift cards to some this year as I just can't be out there this year.  I may do more online shopping then in the past and I hope by doing short cuts like these I will be able to do those things that are important like baking cookies with my boys.

Part of me wants to just skip Christmas and everything related, but I do know I would miss it.  So instead I hope to take it a step at a time and not stretch myself too far.  Pick the important things and if need turn down certain things.  Remember if you don't feel good you will be no fun so take care of yourself and you will be able to enjoy it with out wanting to skip it all.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Furious, Yet Guilty Feeling

I apologize if this is not written in perfect form.  I am so furious with Nicholas our oldest son.  I also feel guilty about what has happened.  I wonder if he is acting out.

The boys were suppose to be in bed a while ago.  Ed and I were on the computer and watching TV, winding down for the evening.  Out of the blue the smoke alarm goes off.  I did not think much of it.  They are sensitive.  Maybe the heater set it off.  Ed went to investigate just in case.

A while had passed so I hobble out (remember the sprained ankle) to see what was up.  He was upstairs and I heard Nicholas crying.  I managed to make it up the stairs.  The more I climbed the stronger the smell of smoke was.  I make it to his room and Ed informs me he was setting things on fire.

Nicholas is just screaming leave.  Ed is telling him he is back to no privileges which we have been lightening up on as he has been pretty good.  I just stand there stunned.  I was so angry, so hurt.  Nicholas is so smart.  He know what could happen.  I could not even speak.  I have yet to say anything since it happened.

I so feel this is all my fault as I have not been able to do things like normal.  I wonder if he is feeling he has to take on more because I can't.  Between the ankle and the flaring in my back I have been drugged and in bed most of the last week.  I have been off my feet for over a month now.  Starting little fires seems so extreme. 

I am going to have to be more aware and with them more.  Not sure how when I haven't even been able to take care of myself.  I don't know what I should do or where to go.  I will try and talk to him tomorrow, but I usually get no response.  Ed is better and I will have him involved. 

If he did this because of me I am going to be so heartbroken.  I know a lot of kids do this.  My brother did, though I do believe he was younger the 12.  I just want happy, healthy, well-adjusted boys, but I feel because of Fibromyalgia I am failing them.  I just can't be going all the time and I do just need to rest at times and unfortunately I am done in by time they get home from school.  I will have to figure a way to push through and do more even if I have to suffer as I cannot and will not let my boys suffer because of this thing call Fibromyalgia.

Monday, November 29, 2010

FREE “Fibromyalgia-Chronic Pain News”

   Sign up on the NFA website for this free subscription for one year. 

One of the National Fibromyalgia Association’s goals is to ensure that all of our registered users have access to resources that offer up-to-date and clinically proven information that continues to raise awareness and assist patients improve their quality of life.

In January 2011, a new monthly online report, “Fibromyalgia-Chronic Pain News” will become available by subscription. It will include articles on recent scientific research that will help patients be alerted to better treatment and diagnostic options, updates on events and activities related to FM and chronic pain, access to and information on new treatment opportunities, and much more!

In support of the National Fibromyalgia Association, the publishers of “Fibromyalgia-Chronic Pain News” have agreed to provide a FREE one year subscription of the monthly report to all of the NFA’s registered users beginning in January. We hope that you will enjoy this gift and that it will become a “must read” along your journey to wellness!
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Friend's Blog on Husband's Depression

I wanted to share this blog;  It is a friend of mine from Avon who's husband suffers from debilitating depression.

  I have suffered with Depression and Anxiety many years and it is very common with Fibromyalgia, so I thought you may be interested in following this as well.  Depression can cause a flare in your Fibromyalgia symptoms and it also caused by dealing with Fibromyalgia.  It can be a vicious cycle not only for us with Fibro, but those who suffter from Depression.

 It runs in my family and I am grateful that I am aware enough to get help.  Unfortunately others have not and suicides have prevailed.  I refuse to let it win.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thanksgiving in the Land of Medicine

I want to wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving.  We who have Fibromyalgia do have a hard time focusing on the good things in life.  I try everyday to be thankful for something as it helps the spirit.  As tough as times are I have a lot to be thankful for.

This year I will be in a bit of a fog.  I am in a major flare with my Fibromyalgia and it is making this Thanksgiving hard to be thankful.  I am in pain because of my ankle sprain.  The boot I wear to help that heal is throwing my back out and the Fibromyalgia compounds it 100 fold.

I did go to the doctor's office after physical therapy yesterday and more or less demanded to see my doctor.  I was in tears I hurt so bad.  Thanks to one of the wonderful front office girls who went back on my behalf was able to get them to see me.  So I am grateful that she cared enough to help.  My doctor upped my muscle relaxants to twice a day and wants me to take Vicoden every 6 hours for pain.  Needless to say I am out of it.

By being out of it, the guilt is creeping in.  I can't do anything.  I am suppose to stay in bed and give my back complete rest.  I feel like I am neglecting my family.  I know I am not, but it is how I feel.  I can't cook, clean, do laundry, much less put out the holiday decorations like normal.  Will have to wait a bit longer this year.

We are going to Ed's sister's for Thanksgiving Dinner so I don't have to worry about that.  We are to bring appetizers (something I am famous for ), but Ed is going to have to make them this year.  He will probably involve the boys so good time for them, but I hate putting that on him after these 14 hour days he has been working.

I will be just a blob at Thanksgiving Dinner as the medicines make me sleep.  But grateful that they are at least dulling the pain some.  I know I can be asleep and comfortable at my sister in law's so that helps. 

Black Friday shopping is out for me this year as well.  I am so disappointed.  I have gone every year with one of my closest friends since we have know each other, something like 17 or 18 years.  I worry that I have let her down even though I know she understands.  Grateful her twin sister and another friend who were going to join us will be able to go out with her and she won't miss out.

Sitting here semi in a fog I still know I have many blessings.  I have a loving family, caring friends, and so many other things to be grateful for.  So I wish everyone the very best for Thanksgiving and to remind you to focus on our blessings instead of the things that bring us down.  In the long run positive thought will bring positive results.

Happy Thanksgiving and many blessing to one and all.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Who is Who in the Kurgin Family

Wondering who I am, and why I started this Blog?  This is an introduction of myself and my family.  You will learn a bit about each of us and please ask questions if you want to learn more.

I am Shannon.  I have been married to my wonderful husband Edward (Ed) since October 1995.  We have 3 great boys.  I have stayed at home since 3 weeks before Nicholas our oldest was born.  I have been blessed to be a stay at home mom.  I also started working from home 5 years ago as an Avon Representative.  Shortly after starting the adventure with Avon I was able to take on the roll of a District Administrative Assistant with an Avon Manager.  I absolutely love helping others be a success.  Recently I also took on a position of appointment maker for a local health insurance agent.

Edward as I call him, Ed as most others do, is my husband.  I love him dearly.  He is very support of me and my challenges and successes.  He is a Robotic Weld Tech, which means he programs and repairs welding robotics for a company that supplies parts to car companies.  Edward is a wonderful dad as well.  He always makes times for the boys and I  even when working 14 hour days.  I could not be married to a better man and the boys could not have a better dad.

Our first born is Nicholas.  He is now 12 years old and one very smart, stubborn kid.  He is a self proclaimed nerd (I guess it is cool to be one now).  He loves school and his career goal is to be a Physicist.  He could definitely do it if he applies himself.  Nicholas does like to take the easy road though at times and we do tend to butt heads.  Many say it is because we are alike.  He is very involved with Boy Scouts, Builders Club, and does do some sports.

Jacob is number 2. He is 8 years old and in 3rd. grade.   He is hard to explain at times.  He is definitely all boy.  Rough and Tough.  Jacob scares me terribly as he seems to have no fear.  He is extremely active.  Loves to run and play.  Jacob is not one to sit still.  He would rather be out playing sports then a lot of other things.  He is also extremely smart.  He wants to go into the service when he is older.  Even though he is not lovey, dovey, he would be the one that would stand up for me first and foremost.

Our baby is Caleb.  He loves the role of being the baby of the family.  Caleb is a lot like Jacob.  A boy to the core.  Hard to believe we were told he was a girl and he came home to a pink room and clothes.  Caleb is a snuggler and loving little boy.  He is also a football and sports fanatic.  He cried when the Olympics were over as he loved watching them.  When we watch sports either on TV or when the boys are playing he knows the rules, much better then I do, and calls out corrections.  Caleb started Kindergarten this year so it is my first year home alone all day in 12 years. 

We also have pets that are considered family.  We have 2 cats.  Ate' is a Siamese and almost 18 years old.  She has been with me ever since I moved out on my own.  Ellery is our other cat.  I rescued her when I was doing an Avon Appointment.  She was stuck up in a tree.  Ellery means top of the tree.  Tucker is our newest addition.  He is an almost 6 month Border Collie.  He has almost as much energy as the boys.

As a family are biggest thing we like to do is camp.  We have a seasonal campsite and spend most weekends there during the summer.  It is a little getaway for us.  We are close and love spending family time together.  If we actually get a chance to be home and not running from thing to thing we like to curl up, watch movie, and have what we call snacky dinner. 

We all believe family and friends come first next to God.  We try to be a morally sound family and are always working on making sure we live by values we feel are important.  Without family and friends you are poor no matter how rich you are.  This is The Kurgin Family in a nutshell.

I started this blog as a way to help others.  I am no expert on Fibromyalgia other then that I live with it.  I want to share my experiences living with Fibromyalgia especially as it relates to being a mom and wife.  I define myself as a mom and wife and it is what I want out of life.  Fibromyalgia makes it a struggle to be the one I want, but as I learn, I know I can be.  Some days the house will be a mess, but my love for my family will be there and that will get us through everything.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

When Mommy Hurts: Introductions Must Wait

When Mommy Hurts: Introductions Must Wait: "Today I was going to introduce myself and my family in detail. Instead this is just a quick short post to say that it is one of my down day..."

Introductions Must Wait

Today I was going to introduce myself and my family in detail.  Instead this is just a quick short post to say that it is one of my down days.  I just don't have the energy or mind power to type it all out.  This is one of the struggles I have with my Fibromyalgia. 

I've had many stressors lately and it has caught up to me.  I am in bed today not just because of a sprained ankle that won't heal but because of exhaustion, pain from head to to, and complete feeling of wanting to hide.  Enjoying quiet till boys get home.  I do have to go to dog class tonight but my oldest is going with me and he can help handle and work the puppy. 

I will get up my introductions as soon as I feel better and can focus on letting you know who we are and why this blog is so important.  Remember you must listen to you body and take time for yourself to recover when need.  That is what I must do today.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

"Find Me On BlogFrog!"


Cool and fun ideas from my friend and co-worker Liza. Great ideas that are a ton of fun for kids and adults alike. Check it out today.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Understanding Trigger Points/Tender Points

Let's talk about dealing with Trigger Points.  This is just information I have learned over the years trying to figure out what was wrong with me.  Trigger Points are points on your body that when lightly pressed causes pain.  Much more pain then it should when touch by the light pressure.  Many call them Tender Points.  See Picture below for where Trigger points are typically located.
 I call them Trigger Points as they cause pain, though I do believe there is a difference technically between Trigger and Tender Points.  All I know is I have these spots and they hurt.  As an example of how much they can hurt I will use an experience I have almost daily.

I have a Siamese cat that is almost 18 years old and she loves to lay on me.  At her heaviest she weighed 8 pounds and she has lost weight recently as her health is deteriorating.  If she steps or walks on certain areas of me her little feet will send me screaming in pain.  I have to be careful not to yell at her or push her off as it's not her fault and she has always done this.  I just have to coax her to another spot.  She barely touches but it hurts.

I have 3 boys.  They are great boys, well most of the time, but they are boys and they are rough.  Even as babies they were rougher then the girls I know.  So they come to give a hug or rub my back trying to be nice to me, but they don't understand how a touch can make mommy not feel good, especially my 5 year old and youngest.  Some days I just don't want to be touched and it is a very hard as a mom not to want to hug your kids because you know it will hurt.  I usually just cringe and go through the pain as I want my boys to feel loved.  As they get older it is tougher to hide it from them.

If you think you have Trigger/Tender points talk with your doctor.  Be persistent.  Though you may not have the so called criteria, but still be suffering from Fibromyalgia.  Unfortunately this is the closest to a test we have, but it really is not a great diagnostic tool.  It is more a process of eliminating anything else that could be wrong.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Got a Boot, And Not the One I Wanted

October 23rd. was going to be a great night.  Going to a friends for a Halloween Party.  Had a babysitter for the boys.  Was going to sit back and have some much needed fun with friends.  That is exactly what I did.  Then it was time to leave.

We said our goodbyes and proceeded to head out the door.  As I was taking a step off the porch I was being warned about the step.  It was a different length down then typical.  The warning came as I was already in the process of stepping.  At that point not sure what happened.  Did I twist it or just step too hard?  Whatever, it was hurt.  Not thinking too much about it we headed home.  I do this kind of stuff all the time.

The next morning I was swollen and bruised on the ankle and foot.  Ok, I sprained it again.  Wrap it up and stay off it for a few days.  Saturday night was the party and by Tuesday the bruising was spreading so I go to the doctor.  Diagnoses, sprain, stay off.

As of today it has been 17 day and it is worse then ever.  Went back to doctor, got new set up x-rays this time including the foot as well as the ankle.  I was sent to a medical supply store to get a walking boot.  To get it on correctly the make it hurt more.  Now I have this lovely thing to where, wait on x-ray results, and start physical therapy next week.

All the hobbling is through my back off and I am feeling a flare coming on.  I hope I can keep that to a minimum.  I want to get back to normal.  The boys think this is a free for all.  Not only can mommy not go after them like normal, which isn't too well, now she can't at all.  Choas is only getting worse for now.

Sad part is I have been looking for a pair of boots I like and will fit me.  Today I got one.  Only one and it is ugly.  Not at all what I had in mind.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Fibro Fog Strike Again

This is a little story that happened to me during the fall.  This represents some of my days dealing with Fibromyalgia and the Fibro Fog.  
Fibro fog makes you think you are losing your mind. You can’t remember a thing.  You are easily distracted and no longer can multitask.  I had a wonderful memory.  I never needed a calendar, though  I kept one around just in case.  Now I can be looking at my calendar and forget to do something.  Yes it can be that bad at times.
Today, for example I have been thinking it is Thursday all day when in actuality it is Tuesday.  Kept thinking of the stuff I had to do then and then realizing I did not have to do it for 2 days.  I had it in my mind it was my day to pick up my oldest son Nicholas and his friend from football practice being my day to drive and all.  I was settled in at home with the 2 younger boys and my husband was on his way home.  Bright idea came.  I’d call him and have him grab the boys. 
I get on the phone with Ed.  I ask him to pick up the boys from practice on his way home.  He reminds me that it was not our turn to drive and again that it is Tuesday. 
This is just one of the many DUH moments I have a day.  My mind seems to have slipped completely away.  Maybe it is the busy schedule, maybe it is the medicines I take, but the term Fibro Fog ( a cognitive problem that causes forgetfulness, lack of concentration, and trouble learning things) that many of us with Fibromyalgia use seems to be the perfect description. 

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Getting a Fibromyalgia Diagnosis

Fibromyalgia is probably one of the hardest things to get diagnosed.  Many doctors are in disbelief that it is a valid disorder.  My own doctor, himself doesn’t like to use the “label” Fibromyalgia. He told me this on my many visits.  He felt like it was a term that was too broad and a catch all for anything that could not be answered.  Part of this is due to the overlapping of symptoms with other diseases. lists the most common symptoms of Fibromyalgia as:
·         Chronic muscle pain
·         Muscle spasms or leg cramps
·         Sleep problems
·         Severe fatigue
·         Anxiety
·         Depression
·         Morning stiffness
·         Headaches
·         Difficulty concentrating
·         Skin sensitivities
·         Irritability
·         Intestinal problems
These symptoms are related to so many other diseases and disorders, from Arthritis to Lupus and many things in between.  I personally have been told it is my anxiety, my depression.  Let’s look at the blood work up.  Nothing found other than a bit of inflammation, probably caused by the Fibromyalgia.  Take a ton of x-rays, MRIs, and more blood. Finally I went to a back doctor and because he and my primary physician couldn’t find anything, they finally agreed with me.  They diagnosed me with Fibromyalgia even though neither of them completely agreed with the diagnoses. 
It can be a very long and frustrating process to get diagnosed with Fibromyalgia.  There are no tests at this time to take to prove you have it. There is a trigger point assessment some rely on where you have to have 11 of the 18 points.   Diagnosing Fibromyalgia is a process of eliminating any other possible cause.  For some it can take years of being told nothing is wrong before you finally get that diagnoses that proves to you that it is not all in your head and that what you feel is for real.