It has been forever since I last posted. I finally realized it was mostly because what I have to say now is really, really difficult for me. Of course rather than just write it down, I procrastinated. But I think I am ready to get this off my chest:
At this time, exercise is helping me manage my Fibromyalgia pain with minimal medication.
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I very clearly remember my first meeting with a specialist when trying to figure what was wrong with me. After asking lots of questions, poking me (painfully) in several places, he delivered the verdict: "Well, I just think you just need to exercise more." I wanted to punch his condescending face!
It was that condescending attitude that makes me reluctant to shout from the rooftops, "EXERCISE MAKES ME FEEL BETTER!" When you are in pain from head to toe, constantly fatigued, and mentally scattered, the last thing you want or need to hear is that you "just need to exercise more."
But I gave exercise one more try. I was able to do some over the summer and it felt good then, and I was willing to do almost anything rather than add anti-depressants to my care regime. Much to my surprise, it worked. My coworkers noticed the difference immediately. I no longer walked like I was 90, and I felt calm and focused. Exercising in the morning before work helped me get through the day, but I was still crashing when I got home. Many nights saw me in bed before 6:00.
I started working with a trainer during the summer, but with the beginning of school I had to find a different time to work with her. The only time that worked for both of us was mid-week, after school. I had made a deal with DH (Dear Husband) that he would take Turtle to school 4 mornings a week so I could hit the gym before work. I did not want to give up my workout before school (and ruin the deal with DH), so I decided that on Wednesdays I would be working out twice. I was prepared to be completely wiped out by the time I was done. But another surprise was in store for me: instead of being ready to crawl into bed the minute I returned home from this second workout, I found that I could stay awake until Turtle's bedtime! It was becoming pretty clear that instead of sapping my energy, exercise was actually giving me energy!
Four weeks after my doctor urged me to consider taking an anti-depressant, I was back in the office, a new woman. She was thrilled with the changes and we decided that at least at this time, I did not need to add any medication. I tweaked my schedule so that I could fit in a second workout most weeknights to help me stay awake and pleasant in the evenings.
If you suffer chronic pain, trust me -I know, I get it! Doing something that can cause more pain is the last thing you want to consider, let alone do. Exercising is making a huge difference in my life, and I feel compelled to share my experience in case it could help someone else.
But it still galls me to admit that someone else was right about exercise. (Stupid, smug, condescending-but-cute doctor.)
To be continued......