You’ve Got to be Kidding Me!

It has been quite a long time since I have written. I wanted to keep up a steady stream of posts, but life got in the way. I figured I would start posting again partly because it helps to get out some frustrations, but also because reading others’ comments and posts helps me immensely.
I recently attempted to obtain my CDL in order to drive a school bus. I was quite excited about the prospect and it took a lot of hoop-jumping to take my permit test. I passed, with flying colors! But, my application for my permit was put on hold due to medical paperwork. My doctors had to fill out three forms stating what conditions I had (Fibro, etc.), the medications I am taking, and if he thought these medications would interfere with my ability to drive a commercial vehicle. Well, guess what? Even after a week of classroom training, 2 drug tests, a physical, and a tank and a half of gas (driving around for all this paperwork), I can’t continue or receive my permit because of my Tramadol! The one medication I am unwilling to give up because of how much it helps me is preventing me from obtaining a better-paying job. Just another hiccup, but another reason why I need to try and accept what I have because… it is going to affect everything!!!
I don’t take Tramadol every day. Actually I take it about 3 times a week. That is not a lot by any means. I am aware that I am lucky in that respect, but taking only 3 pills a week is not because I’m not in pain. It is because I don’t want my body to become accustomed to the medication and because I feel like I can do anything on it (maybe this is why I am not allowed to drive a school bus πŸ˜‰ “Oh yeah, of course I can lift this bus off the train tracks! I can do anything. I am Tramadol Girl!”
Anyway, it has been quite a struggle to accept I have a disability. I still haven’t ever said that word out loud. I feel I am normal and just have my times when I am “sick”. I get frustrated very easily and constantly wonder why I can’t…
-Go out for drinks after working 8 hours
-Go shopping all day
-Lift boxes, climb ladders, and basically put my body through hell and NOT have to pay for it the next day
-Shovel the driveway without worrying about the pain I’ll be in

I would like to keep up with my posts and continue to write more. Please comment or ask questions. Writing about the daily stresses of having Fibro helps me and others like me. I had someone ask me if there is a surgery for Fibro. I said “I wish”, but I actually just wish there was a clear cut and answer as to why, then we can talk about possible “cures”.

Thank you!

Thank you for:

my mom and dad

my brother and sisters

my husband

my stepdaughter

my kitties

my job

my own house

my show-stopping good looks πŸ˜‰

my eyesight (20/13) yeah baby

good blood pressure

my abilities and talents

my hunger for knowledge

 

There are many more things to add to this list. Many more! And I will be adding them here and there.

 

I have learned that being grateful Β and positive is an essential part of being happy and in less pain. I haven’t written in quite a long time. I’m not sure how long, but a while. I turned 27. I started seeing a pain management specialist and a physical therapist. I see so many physicians in regards to my fibro (or whatever I have). Β I am hoping one of them can help me. I’ve had steroid injections which haven’t done much of anything. I’ve given up soda completely. I’m on day 13. I am now trying to be more aware of how much sugar I ingest (it’s a lot!) a combination of these HAS to work. Crossing my fingers.

Doing Ok

Happy Father’s Day to all those who teach our kids how to be great!

Had the family over today for pizza on the grill. Haven’t tried it? There are recipes all over Pinterest. It’s very simple, versatile and delicious. We had BBQ chicken, sausage, peppers and onions, and chicken and tomato. All were yummy!

I had to do a decent amount to prepare for today including shopping and cleaning. I think this put me into a flare-up. I’m exhausted, sore, and just lethargic. Surprisingly though, my back is better. Thank goodness. It won’t last long because I go back to my physically demanding job tomorrow, but I will enjoy the pain-free time.

I feel like I am stretching all the time. Stretching my back, my legs, my neck. I do yoga. Not regularly like I should, but when I really need to. I would like to do it more often and there really isn’t anything keeping me from doing it every day except laziness and exhaustion. Two very good reason TO DO yoga. I would like to sing yogas praises. My friends and family know me as the girl who does yoga. “She must be flexible. She must be a good shape. I can’t doing yoga because I can’t even touch my toes.” People! The very reason I do yoga is TO stay in some sort of shape πŸ™‚ and to stay flexible. Yoga is much, much more than “touching your toes” or twisting yourself into a pretzel.

Yoga means “union.” I like to think of yoga as my way of uniting my mind and body. When I am doing yoga I am focusing on my body, not my thoughts or my anxiety. I am not living in my head while doing yoga I am living in the moment.

I would like to write more, but all this yoga talk has got me ready to do some asanas. Tonight is going to be a gentle series of poses so as not to bring up my energy level, but rather calm me down.

Namaste for now.

Did I forget I have Fibromyalgia or…

Am I ignoring all my symptoms just to get my job done.

I haven’t written in quite a while. Mostly because I have no time or energy. My job takes everything I have. Everything! On my days off I want to visit with my family and friends and most of the time I do, but at the expense of my health.

As I write, my back is throbbing so badly I just want to shove something into it to make it stop! I do yoga. I ice it. I see a chiropractor. All this does diddly squat if I ignore the fact that I have FM. I forget sometimes how much pain I really am in. That sounds strange, but if I focus on how I am feeling all the time I wouldn’t want to do much. As I have said in previous posts, I take Tramadol for my pain. Tramadol doesn’t touch this back pain. I have had this pain for about 10 years, but recently it has moved into my hip, back and side of my leg and my foot. When I wake up in the morning I can’t place pressure on my foot because I get a shooting pain. I have to slowly walk on it and eventually the pain subsides. This is a new, really annoying symptom!

This is going to be a grumpy post because I just want to be a normal 26-year-old with normal pain! I’m pretty sure I aggravated my back when I moved the couches today. Why would I move something like that you ask? Well… I am stubborn. Very stubborn. I had to ask my husband to lift a pot of water off the stove and it almost killed me. I feel like an 80-year-old. I know if I take care of my body my pain will be at a minimum, but it is hard a lot of the time.

I will post again soon. Reading everyone’s posts really helps. I don’t feel alone. I welcome any comments or suggestion. It helps that there are other young people out there going through the same thing I am.

How I Manage a 40-Hour Work Week

Singing Tramadol’s Praises

I don’t know what I would do without my pain medication. I have worked the past 3 nights in a row (2 until 9:30 and tonight until 6:45). I normally work mornings from 7-3. This schedule change has taken a toll on my body and my Fibro. I also have to work another night shift tomorrow. It does help slightly that I can “sleep in,” but I don’t and can’t sleep past 7:30. That is “sleeping in” for me.

Anyway, today I had to work 10 hours. I had no idea how I was going to pull this off without a miracle. I have a hard time with 8 hour days, don’t even talk about adding 2+ hours to that. It was about noon (went in at 8:30am) when I realized I was in severe pain and wasn’t sure I could keep working. I mean working in general, not just today. I ached worse than I have in a while. I was freezing and absolutely exhausted and very irritable. I texted my husband to let him know I wasn’t sure I could do this anymore. Mind you, we are closing on a house in 2 weeks. Needless to say he was a little nervous. About 20 minutes later I reached in my pocket for a pen and realized I hadn’t taken my Tramadol. Duh! No wonder I was in so much pain. I hadn’t taken my magic pain killers.

Tramadol is a drug I had never heard of until my rheumatologist prescribed it to help with my Fibro pain. I took it and still do, only when needed. Basically, that is once or twice a day when I work. Lately, I have come to realize how much this medication helps me live a semi-normal life. It is like a breath of fresh air. You can literally see the pain leave my face. When I am flaring I am pale, clammy, I have dark circles under my eyes, smiling is damn near impossible, and all I want to do is lay down. I certainly don’t want to talk to anyone, especially my customers (who I enjoy talking to otherwise). Once I take my Tramadol the change in my body and in my face is almost immediate. I am a whole different person.

I could not work if it weren’t for Tramadol. There is no way. Working 40 hours a week is necessary for my family to keep living the lifestyle we have (which is by no means extravagant). And, like I said, we are buying a house, so quitting or going part-time is not an option.

I do worry because sometimes Tramadol makes me feel like I can do anything (lift boxes, climb ladders, basically over-exert myself). With Tramadol and other coping methods I can do all this, in moderation, but I tend to over-do thing much more often than I should since I have learned a lot about living with Fibromyalgia. One lesson being, I have a condition which makes it hard for me to do physical activities. Even if I look like I can do it (and most of the time I can) it’s the after-effect that kills a Fibro sufferer. I am a stubborn person and if there is no one around to help me I will lift that 40lb box and pull that 200lb pallet. I know I shouldn’t, but learning to ask for help is much more difficult than it seems (that’s another post).

I would recommend Tramadol to anyone with Fibro. Try it. The worst that could happen is that it doesn’t work and you move on to something else. It is worth a shot. Believe me, if all I have to do is take a small pill every day, do yoga regularly and keep my sugar and sugar-substitute habit in check to help ease my symptoms, I am happy do all three.

Time for a restful nights sleep. πŸ˜‰

No more substitutes.

I have started to research the link between sugar substitutes and fibro pain. I am in the beginning stages, but I’m not sure I need to investigate much more.

When I had my tonsils out I had to lay off the soda for 2 weeks. This helped me kick my diet soda habit. It was bad. I had at least one can a day, maybe 2. If I went out to eat I would have 3 or 4 glasses. It’s just diet soda right? Well, today I had a 1/2 of a can of Pepsi One (sweetened with Splenda, but still a substitute none the less) and my legs and hips ached so bad I was almost in tears. Normally when I come home from working 8 hours I am tired and achy, but nothing lying down and relaxing, or a little yoga can’t help alleviate. Not today. My hips haven’t ached this bad in a long time, nor have my legs. This got me thinking. I haven’t had a diet soda for a day or 2 and wasn’t in this much pain. Could there be a correlation?

Tomorrow is day 1 of testing out this “no sugar substitute theory.” I am very curious to see what I find. I know aspartame is horrible for anyone, it’s poison essentially, but it was my way of giving my brain that sugar fix. I have a ridiculous sweet tooth and if I ate all the sugar I craved I’d be severely overweight. So instead I started relying on Splenda, Sweet-n-Low, and Equal. I know the substitutes also make the cravings for regular sugar worse, but I didn’t care. I could drink all the soda and eat all the “sugar-free” stuff I wanted without gaining weight. Well, I think I’d rather try to curb my sweet tooth than keep putting this crap in my body.

I know it sounds all crunchy, natural and yogi-ish, but I really do think there is something to this “sugar-free” life having a negative effect on me. I will continue to write about my experience. I know I haven’t written in a while, but I will try my best.

On a side note, I am also looking into alternative meds for anxiety. I have had anxiety since I was a child and have been a low dose of meds for about 3 years. The meds help a lot, but I think they are causing me a lot of problems, including weight gain. I am not against prescription drugs. Tramadol is my life saver when it comes to my fibro pain, but a prescription that has side-effects that interfere with my daily life is not ok with me. Like I said, I have been taking this particular drug for about 3 years and have dealt with the side-effects, but I think it’s time to see if there is a healthier way to calm my mind.

Until next time, Namaste.

Back to Work/Erin Go Braugh!

Sunday is Saint Patrick’s Day. You can’t tell by my last name (married or maiden), but I AM Irish and very proud to be. I am drooling just thinking about my corned beef or boiled dinner with vinegar. πŸ™‚

This day is also my first day back to work after 2.5 weeks off due to my tonsillectomy. I am nervous. People with fibro have a very difficult time getting back into the swing of things after taking time off. I know I will get tired very quickly and will probably also have a flare-up. There is nothing I can do about it. I can take it easy, eat as well as possible, and get a lot of sleep, (which is a catch-22 for fibro sufferers- the more you sleep the less active you are and the more your body hurts, the less you sleep, the less time your body has to recouperate) but after that it is up to my body.

I am in the middle of a flare now. I believe it is from the stress my body went through after surgery and the healing. This new symptom I developed about 6 months ago is also very annoying! My body can’t regulate its temperature sometimes. I am either too hot and sweating or too cold and shivering to the bone. I haven’t found a way to control this except to be well rested (very rarely am I well-rested).

So with a little “Luck of the Irish” Sunday will go well and I will back to the swing of a 40-hour work week in no time. Also, Spring is coming! This means tulips, Easter, and warm, sunny days filled with lots of light (Vitamin D).