Friday, November 13, 2009

A better understanding of Fibromyalgia

I recently developed a back problem - possibly a disc bulge or herniation - that caused sciatica, which made my left leg numb and painful and weak.  The weakness caused my ankle to roll, and it wasn't long before the ankle rolled at an inopportune moment as I reached the bottom the stairs and put my whole weight on that foot.  Now I have a 3rd degree ankle sprain, and constant severe pain in my calf and ankle.

So what does that have to with understanding Fibromyalgia?  Well, my wife has fibromyalgia.  She's in constant pain and even the smallest things can aggravate it and doing tasks that most people wouldn't think twice about cause her great pain and exhaustion.  Intellectually I understand that.  But an intellectual understanding is not the same as sympathy and empathy and experiencing it a bit for yourself.  Now that I'm dealing with this injury, walking to the other end of the house causes pan with every step which is oddly exhausting.  Just bearing the pain - even with the meds - leaves me trembling an exhausted.  I look at chores I should be doing, simple small chores, and just can't make myself do them because I know the price I'll pay in pain is just too high.  Once I'm fairly comfortable in bed or sitting I'm now asking my daughters to fetch things for me, because to get up and get something myself requires great effort and pain.  I feel useless, like a burden.  It's extremely frustrating and it takes an emotional toll.  And I've only been dealing with it for a week and only one leg bothering me!  My wife has been dealing with it for a decade with her whole body bothering her.  I now have a much better understanding of what she's going through and I admire the strength she has for continuing on despite everything.  I wish I could make her better.  No one deserves the kind of torture she endures on a daily basis.

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