Living With Fibromyalgia - Online Support Group

Hello, I'm Lisa (AussieMom)

I’ve had fibromyalgia, arthritis, degenerative disc dis., anxiety, etc…for many years. I’ve had surgeries to replace my thumb joints (I was a pianist all my life - the operative word being "was’), 2 neck surgeries (from front & back -4 discs fused with plate & rods), & more surgeries to come for feet & possibly shoulders. Also, many meds for pain & constant injections. At times, it is overwhelming. I try to focus on the immediate (or most painful) problem, and take care of that first (e.g., I will deal with my feet asap, and then do the necessary PT for my shoulders & lower back).

I still work full time, and will until my hands finally give out. It is good to have a purpose in life, and I feel like fibromyalgia has stripped away so many things that I used to love to do, and sapped me of my energy. I try to explain to my husband that I only have so much energy, and then it’s gone. Thankfully, he really is a wonderful man - but how on earth can people, that don’t have this condition, really understand? That’s why I’m here. I wanted to meet folks that are going through this. I wanted to know I’m not alone.

I have a precious toy aussie that is like a therapy dog to me (I’ll be working from home at least another 2 months) and a beautiful 4-year old granddaughter that is, at times, the only thing that makes me glad to be alive.

Sorry to be a downer, but it does help to say these things that are usually bottled up inside.

Anyway - Hi, everyone! I’ve been reading on the site a little and I’m glad to meet you all. Believe it or not, I still see myself as an optimistic person. But, for the life of me, I don’t know why!

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Hello Lisa and Welcome to the forum I am Annette one of the moderators of the site I am glad you have found us and you never have to feel alone come on here at any time we all understand what it is like to suffer so much I do not see you as a downer and I think it is great that you still work in spite of all the things you have wrong you appear to have a lovely family and your little dog seems great also look on us all on here as your new-found friends I hope you have some good days and I look forward to talking with you again Annette.

You are so very kind, Annette. Thank you for the uplifting words and the offer of friendship! It is nice to be able to let go of these feelings without being judged or pitied. I definitely need people like you in my life.

Hello no need to thank me it is what we are here for to help each other through the rough times you will never be judged on here hope you are coping and keeping as well as you can. Annette.

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Write anytime…also read everyone’s “blogs” - you are not alone in the pain. I cant walk a dog anymore, but have taken on a cat. A pet is a wonderful companion whether you live alone or with family.

AussieMom, so many surgeries!!! With each surgery more and more damage sets in, more OA…I live with a mess from a hip replacement 10 yrs ago soon…lots of damage…

I’m 82 soon and HOPE to never have a knife enter my body again. I work to keep walking and moving and take a LOT of supplements and low amounts of pain MILD meds…

We all do it our way and Welcome to you.

I agree, Jaminhealth - surgery should be a last resort. I would love to be able to walk without so much foot pain, and I have put this off for years. My sister hopes that I can find a way to deal, without surgery, as our mom had much continuing pain and problems after her foot surgeries. We will see… Thank you for your post. It is wonderful that you stay so active! I hope you have a lovely day!

I love cats, Carolyn! They aren’t as “needy” as dogs (although I love dogs, too), but they are just as loving as dogs are. I miss having a cat, but my hubby is NOT a cat person!

Welcome, Lisa!! I’m so glad you’re here. Quite obvious to me you’re a fighter! I can relate to the various conditions you deal with, and the concept of managing them in order of what hurts the most on any given day! The world’s crappiest juggling act, eh?
One thing I struggle with: just when I reach a point of accepting the various chronically injured areas in my body, AND the random attacks by fibro… I’ll injure some previously UNPAINFUL spot. Currently; that’s my left knee. Didn’t do anything to it, it just became painful and swollen a few days after a longer than usual walk-on pavement. It’s being treated by my orthopedic, but despite a steroid injection it’s going to require further intervention.
My point is… I go through this anger and added stress anytime an additional pain or injury works it’s way into my life! It’s like, I’m doing my best to manage the chronic stuff and learn to accept a certain amount of daily pain, then along comes a blown out knee… and my mind is going, “NO FAIR!! NO FAIR!!” The additional pain puts me over the edge, emotionally; and I become angry about my lot in life all over again.
The difference these days(compared to even a year ago) I recognize this pattern with me, and thanks to my “Daily Calm” app, I’ll stop the angry monologue in my head and turn to meditation instead. The practice of meditation is a game changer. It doesn’t erase pain; it shifts your awareness. The more often I choose to shift my awareness, the less I focus on pain. The less I focus on pain, the more I can reduce stress; and when stress is reduced, healing can happen.
Now… patience with myself…? Ha!! That’s a continuous challenge, but I must remember that I’m not 12 anymore and my body won’t heal as fast as it did then!! Lol
It’s great to hear you are still working full time. I miss my career as a nurse. But… learning to accept that that’s behind me now. I’ve grappled with guilt during this pandemic, knowing my friends and colleagues were out there on the front lines and I could not be there for and with them. But I do my part by following prevention guidelines, and encouraging those in my community to do the same! My family and friends still count on me for health related advice and info, and I’m grateful for 30 years of experience and a good nursing education… no one can take that from me. It will always come in handy.
Well! I’ve carried on and on enough and the days duties call. I wish you and everyone here a peaceful productive day, and hope you’ll all remember(and then; remind ME!!) to BE GENTLE WITH YOURSELF.:kissing_heart:

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Hi, N8trluvr!
As far as “anger” - I think the most anger I had to get past was losing my ability to play piano. (I can still play a little, but it causes me pain to over-do.) I had played almost all my life and was at a church were we did contemporary Christian music, along with some of the old hymns (in a new way). I played with a band there (It actually takes a lot of training to learn to play with a band and orchestra) and had been there for over twenty years. I felt like I lost my identity when I had to give that up. I’m sure many on this site can relate.
How wonderful that you were a nurse for so many years! That is a real calling, and it is great that you can still impart your wisdom from all of that experience. I can see that it is still very much a part of who you are.
I’m sorry that your knee will need repair - It sounds extremely painful, and, I agree, brutally unfair. My hubby had many surgeries on one knee until finally he was old enough to have a knee replacement. Wow - that is not a surgery for wimps! Now he wants to get the other knee done, but I keep reminding him of everything he went through after the surgery (There were some problems during his recovery that were unexpected, scary, & potentially life threatening). I want to be sure that he is really ready emotionally, b/c, honestly - I’m not. I’ve told his daughter that she will have to step in and stay at the hospital at nights - My meds will put me to sleep at night & I’m no good to him that way. And, I’m no good to anyone if I don’t get proper rest - Just one more thing that “normal” folks can’t relate to.
I’m super glad we are getting to know each other, and I love your mantra BE GENTLE WITH YOURSELF. Have a wonderful day! :blush:

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I’m so sorry about your hubby’s knee! I feel for him… in fact isn’t that one of the subtle “gifts “ of living with chronic pain: we certainly GET IT and are well equipped to empathize with other’s physical suffering. I hope that whichever procedure or treatment he decides on will bring him relief and a healthy speedy recovery :blush:
(Soooo nice getting to know you too!)
Warm regards,
Kelly( aka:N8trluvr)

Hello Kelly good conversations with the other ladies once a nurse always a nurse same here I am always phoned for medical advice and in previous years lost count of the number of family I nursed through illness but it is what we trained for hope you are keeping as well as possible.
Regards Annette.

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Thanks Annette78, and you are quite right… It’s what we trained for! I wouldn’t trade the knowledge or experience ( or late night calls from loved ones!) for anything in this world… being able to help others gives us purpose and is the cornerstone of being human, I think.
Feeling pretty good today… so far! Getting my first REAL haircut and color since the Pandemic quarantine began mid-March ; thank GOODNESS! My locks cannot withstand another DIY trim!:rofl:
Hope you have a great day!

I am so jealous, N8trluvr! I still have my “Covid-19” hair - grey at the top, of course! Must get motivated to call my hair stylist. Working from home (in your nightshirt), every day, can make a person too comfortable!!! LOL