Fibromyalgia Diagnosis and Lowering the Bar

7 years post fibromyalgia diagnosis and I’m still trying to accept that lowering the bar is essential to living my best life. Pushing myself beyond my physical limitations leads to a flare, period.

I push too hard and I get knocked down. It’s really that simple. Forgiving myself these limits. Now that’s where I struggle.

Pre Fibromyalgia Diagnosis

I’d like to say that I’ve learned not to beat myself up over it. But, that’d be a lie.

The truth is that I still spend way too much time belittling myself for not getting things done. And, when I do finally finish a task, I judge myself in comparison to my pre fibromyalgia diagnosis standards. Which I can no longer live up to.

So, what does this achieve? Nothing positive, that’s for sure. Quite the opposite. I deflate my energy level to sub-zero with all the unspoken words of criticism bouncing around in my head.

Instead, I should be supportive and patting myself on the back for doing my best. I know I need to adjust the bar downward. It’s just that I’m having a hard time accepting it.

Sometimes the sky is not the only limit
Sometimes the Sky is not the Only Limit

Setting Fibro Standards

Which brings me to my biggest fibromyalgia lifestyle hurdle; lowering the bar.

Having to lower my standards, is my biggest fibro struggle. Not the pain. Except when I’m having a fibro flare of course. Then pain is number one. But even then, often I spend much of my involuntary painful downtime stressing over what I’m not getting done.

My insurmountable hurdle since my Fibromyalgia diagnosis has been accepting that I can no longer strive for excellence in everything that I do.  I have always been an overachiever and strove to continuously raise the bar higher. I’m very competitive. And pre-Fibromyalgia diagnosis, my toughest opponent at most things was always myself.

Whatever I achieved, I’d push myself to do it better the next time.

Need to start showing myself a little more love after fibromyalgia diagnosis
Time to Start Showing Myself a Little Love

7 years after having been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia I’m finally learning to accept that my standards have to change and that I need to start congratulating myself a little more on my many daily successes rather than condemning myself for things beyond my control.

Sometimes in life, the sky is not the only limit and that is ok.

Thanks for stopping by! If you haven’t followed already I’d love to see you over on the facebook page too. Sending gentle hugs your way.

Don’t you just love when someone says you need to be more active?

Simple, Just Get Active They Say

The moment the words ‘get active’ escape their lips my focus shifts 100% to holding back the incredible urge to roll my eyes. For the most part, unsuccessfully.

It’s like constantly replaying the perfect vine loop or watching Groundhog Day over and over. We keep hearing how we need to get active in order to feel better. But, what people don’t understand is, we need to feel better in order to get active in the first place.

Press play and repeat day after day after day the exhausting loop plays.

For five years I spent a lot of days, months actually, beating myself up for not being active. It’s exhausting silently screaming at yourself constantly to get up and get active.

Music is Good Medicine

Then about a year ago I started listening to music again. Not only did the right playlist cheer me up, but often I’d catch myself bee bopping to the music.

Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t pulling off DWTS or anything. Sometimes I was simply swaying to the music or shuffling around like Tim Conway. But, I was standing and I was moving. 

Which when your battling fibromyalgia’s chronic pain, counts as getting active as far as I’m concerned. Music doesn’t always get me moving. But, it does some days and in my opinion that’s better than no days at all.

Anyway, I remembered how much I loved going out dancing and how good it made me feel and so for awhile now I’ve been working at wiggling my butt daily.

Music helps me get active
The right playlist lifts my spirits and gets me moving

I created a bunch of personal mood lifting playlists. Each one is 6 songs and about 20 minutes long. While prepping for my shower, I press play and more days than not the music gets me swaying. I always try to get boogieing before hopping into the shower, because I’m usually physically zapped after.

Turns out, well for me anyway, that music is good medicine. Hmmmm, who knew?

Get Active, It’s a Personal Thing

What I had to learn was, to set the bar at a realistic level for me. And, to give myself credit for any and all physical activity. To encourage myself to get up and just get moving instead of putting myself down because I expected my version of “getting active” to be on par with die hard gym goers or the people I see out jogging.

It’s time Fellow Fibro Warriors to pat yourself on the back each and every time you wiggle that butt, even if it’s ever so slightly.

PS – I started this post back in April. Little did I know that one of my all time favourite funny people would be moving on from this world before I finished it. RIP Tim Conway, thank you for filling my life with laughter.

Fibro Flare Ranting Brings Relief; Sometimes

Beware Ranting About a Fibro Flare

Been a bad fibro flare week. Yuck! Pretty sure an infection is kicking up into high gear and heading out on its road trip through my body. Wonder which route it will take this time…

Fibro Flare Rant Ouchie EyesSo far my eyes are looking like I had a wickedly good party, and my sinuses have started that all too familiar throb. I’m so tired that I can’t keep my eyes open, but once they flutter closed I can’t fall asleep. If I am lucky enough to finally drift off, a sound, no matter how gentle startles me awake.

I sit up and try again. Rinse n’ repeat as I like to call it. Try to focus on something in front of me, and slowly the eyes begin to close. Then my chin hits my chest, head lolls to the side and I begin to drift. A bird chirps somewhere and WHAM! I’m startled awake once again.

Fibro Flare Ranting For Relief

Argggggggggg! I freaking hate fibro flares!

Thanks for letting me rant. I really do try my best to keep things positive, but sometimes reality just plain and simply sucks! Especially, when you’re living with fibromyalgia. And, some days just letting go and getting it all off my chest is the best medicine. Am I right, or what?

Instead of painting on a smile and picking through a massive pile of negative for one teeny tiny itsy bitsy spark of a silver lining, sometimes it is ok to accept that there just really isn’t anything good about today except that it will inevitably turn into tomorrow.

Moan about it, groan about it and maybe even allow yourself to cry a little.

I mean, I’m not talking about allowing yourself to dive into some downward spiral where there are dangers of drowning in the deep dark depths of negativity. I just mean acknowledging that at a particular moment in time, especially during a fibro flare life is not fair and on this particular day it just plain sucks.

My Brindle Boy Leo Keeping me Company During a Fibro Flare
Misery Loves Company

Yesterday was an ok day, and I hope tomorrow will be great but today? Well, today is an awful day and I’m giving myself permission to not fake it.

I hurt everywhere and have sub-zero energy. I’m feeling miserable, and for a little while I’m going to allow myself to sit here uncomfortably in pain and be miserable.

So for now my fibro warrior friends I leave you with a quote from I Love Lucy “WAHHHHHHHHH”!

 

Take care and cheers to having fabulous fibro flare free days!

Shelley www.FibroFog.ca – Really appreciate it if you follow my blog

PS – Let’s hook up on social media https://www.instagram.com/fibrofogdotca https://www.facebook.com/fibrofogdotca



Diagnosis Emotionally Depleted

Emotionally Smooshed

Ever been so emotionally pummelled that you feel like you just can’t breathe?

No fun, right? That’s where I’m at right now. I know, I know it’s up to me to get myself out of this funk. Rationally, I know that I have the power in me to NOT emotionally react the way that I am. Of course, it’s in there somewhere. Although, it must be real freaking down deep though, because I’m having a hard time reaching it.

Ever felt emotionally pummelled? Me tooBelieve me I’m trying. It’s like I’m on that rinse n’ repeat, rinse n’ repeat cycle. A loop if you will. Lie in bed, restless, itty bitty pieces of my heart floating around. My brain pounding, my heart throbbing, my mind rambling on and on and on it goes until almost daylight. Finally, at least some sleep.

Not great sleep, dreams wayyyyyy to emotional for deep sleep, but some sleep.

At this point I wake up groggy, but determined to smile. Exhausted, emotionally and physically. Even so, I drag out the tablet and get to work on a social marketing project.

Determination! I will turn things around and I will feel better today. In a little while, I’ll start smiling again. I will be inspired and I will be inspiring.

Ah it’s noon! I’m feeling and writing better. My pictures are brighter. Also, my posts are happier. There’s an optimistic feel about them that wasn’t there this morning.

And, Off We go Again…

Suddenly I remember, I made it to this point yesterday too. Much earlier, today took longer. STOP! Don’t do this! Must not start thinking about how everything emotionally unravelled yesterday. Most importantly, don’t bring yourself down. You have to do this! You have to emotionally pump yourself back up.

Think happy thoughts! Go to your happy place! You know, all that cliché crap happy stuff. Well, to be fair it isn’t actually crappy. Logically, I know it’s true but it is just tough getting there sometimes.

Then, sometimes it is beyond hell just trying to grasp onto one tiny glimmer of happy at all. Not even going to talk about how hard it can be to stay there.

Nevertheless, it’s the freaking emotional roller coaster ride that’s killer. I think I can, I think I can, runs through my head as I’m pulling myself up that steep never ending hill. I get to the top. Hands on hips, I beam as I survey the beauty surrounding me.

Wouldn’t you know it! Something beyond my control happens and WHAM! It’s a straight shot to the bottom again.

That is of course, the little white lie that I tell myself. It’s beyond my control, is a technicality that I’m using to try and fool myself. There is something that can be done to avoid the emotional wreckage. I know what I should do, I know what I probably have to do. In any case, it’s just not fair!

Then again, who ever said life has to be fair, especially emotionally?

Gentle hugs fibro pals xox

PS – Check it out → www.FunWaysToHeal.com come along on my experimental journey while I reintroduce some joy into my Fibro life.