I shouldn’t be writing this post.
No, seriously, I really ought to be writing something else, something relevant to advancing my studies or career or something else that I know is more important.
Even more seriously, typing this actually hurts. My hands, arms, chest, back, stomach, sides, thighs, knees, calves and ankles hurt. You name it, it hurts. There are parts of me that are hurting that I didn’t know could hurt. Then I remember:
This is the nature of fibromyalgia.
I am used to the pain. Thus, I cannot truly complain about it. This post is not about that. It is about how to deal with the randomness of the pain or any other FMS symptoms, of being the unsuspecting victim of your own body.
So, What Do I Do?
THE 5 Gs
GIVE (IN)| GET (ORGANIZED) | GRATITUDE | GROW | GATHER
1. Give in / Give up – Not on getting better, but on denying your experience. What it basically means is accepting the reality of the situation. For a long while, I was really hard on myself whenever I had a significant flare-up. I was constantly seeking to figure out when I would feel better, as though there were a timer ticking away and counting down to zero. Give it up, that’s not the way it goes.
2. Get Organized – Take a look at your obligations and figure out what can be put on the back-burner, what can be modified, and what needs to be immediately addressed. The next step is to notify anyone who may be directly impacted by your current state. Don’t leave others in the lurch just because you are ill. Be clear with everyone about what you can do and when you can do it, if at all.
3. Go for Gratitude – The world didn’t collapse because you are having a flare-up. It’s not that serious. Be grateful for what you can do, what you have already accomplished, and what you will be able to do. Wallowing in self-pity will get you nowhere very, very quickly. So, try not to be about that life.
4. Get Ready to Grow – Every moment, regardless of the value we assign to it, is an opportunity for personal growth. Use this time to explore yourself. If you are able to do something, read something new. If you aren’t able to do anything at all, listen to music or close your eyes and allow your imagination to take you on new adventures. Do your best to remember that you are more than this moment.
5. Gather Positivity – Whether alone or with loved ones, choose activities that reinforce the positives of your life, rather than focus on the negative. I find it best to avoid discussing my current state.
Sometimes you may encounter people, I call fixers, who are very invested in solving your illness, and who will bombard you with seemingly never-ending questions–politely refuse to answer or simply avoid them.
Some people have limited patience for your illness, and these are people who you most definitely should do your best to avoid.
Negativity will only serve to bring you down, causing you to feel stressed and may severely impact your recovery time. Gather around you people who bring with them a bit of sunshine, especially in the winter months.
No Matter What, Keep It Positive While You Find Your Way Back On Your Path.
Until Next Time,
5 thoughts on “FMS | Consistently Embrace the Inconsistency of FMS (The 5 Gs)”
I took me 6 months to come to terms with my Fibro as a disability, and that I will have it for life, now I am cool with knowing that fact. I see the positives that Fibro has brought my way, so not complaining too much. It was hard the other day though, when my boss had an unexpected meeting with me and asked if my Fibro was getting worse. I have permission to sit down in work, because of my Fibro, but apparently some people – Other managers I believe, don’t seem to be happy with it, because no one else is allowed. I have worked in my job for over 2 years, my boss knew this in my interview and my legs are my worse affected area. I was managing my leg pain well until she mentioned this, and now from trying to stand up more, I have more pain, feel the pain more in my mind and have been stressed and worried more about my job. Right now I am not well. I had a tummy bug and was severely sick yesterday. I think the fact she has brought this up with me, has put a strain on an already weak immune system. I have learnt to block out the pain mentally, but now she has brought it to the forefront of my mind. It’s bad.
I am so very sorry that you are going through such a difficult time, particularly for the experience that you are having at work.
I think we often forget–I know I do–that the little instances of negativity that we experience in our days can morph into a large problem (physically and psychologically), if they are not addressed consistently, whether directly or indirectly.
Keep faith, and smile even when you feel like crying, because you already know that this moment that you are in will change soon enough. Try to distract yourself from the worries about your work and the pain in your body. I find doing child-related things helps: watching cartoons, playing a game (Scrabble), listening to a YA book. Whatever you can.
Worry about your work won’t change the worries at your work. So, while you are having to remain home (if you are) or return home, focus on what can make you happy. Happiness, I find, always helps me to feel better…even when I am in pain.
Sending you much love and a pain-free hug,
Yeah, so true. I try to cut out all negativity in my life since having Fibro, (that is a huge benefit) but when it’s my boss, I have to hear it and listen to it – the secret I guess, I to not take it in and to heart, but if I feel my job my become under threat, then it makes me feel stressed and under pressure and the Fibro worse.
I understand you completely…There is not easy way around it. One strategy that I regularly employ is giving myself daily reminders. I keep a list (whether mental or physical) of what I have accomplished for each day, even if it is simply opening my eyes. It may sound absurd, but it has really helped me. I also work on keeping in the moment, being mindful, so that I am not focusing on what has already happened and what I fear might happen. I would suggest checking out the following book: 10 Simple Solutions for Building Self-Esteem: How to End Self-Doubt, Gain Confidence & Create a Positive Self-ImagGlenn R. Schiraldiraldi. I have found and still find it personally and professionally useful. Living with Fibromyalgia is like learning a very complicated dance (in my case, Flamenco)–You may quickly grasp the basics, but it may take a lifetime to become expert at it. Massive Hugs for You! 🙂
Hi Diedre, I am fine about things now, thank you. I still have the pain obviously, but I have been working so much, enjoying life and all of the exciting things I am going to be doing in my businesses next yea, around my embraceyourquirky life and business philosophy, that enabled me to free myself from depression, almost 3 years ago, without any medication. I use it in my everyday life too, it’s awesome. I do a lot of the same things as you. I write successes in my diary and I have a teenagers bedrooms and live a young, quirky life. I meet and talk with friends who make me feel good and I do what makes me happy, over and over again. I didn’t have any time off work for being sick, I just happened to be on two days off. Thanks for your care about me xx