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Living with Fibromyalgia: My Story

I thought I was dying. It was January 2015, and my muscles did not stop aching. I could not work out for as long as I could previously. No matter what I ate or for how long I slept for, the severe, constant pain did not go away. Being afraid of what was happening, my mother and I decided to go to the emergency room.

Weeks later after a few visits to the doctor along with tests, I was officially diagnosed with fibromyalgia. The Mayo Clinic defines fibromyalgia as “characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain accompanied by fatigue, sleep, memory and mood issues.”[1] For me personally, fibromyalgia created intense pain in my thighs, knees, wrists, and arms.

Living every day was a challenge, and there would be days were I was unable to get out of bed due to the symptoms- even if I felt motivated or was in a pleasant mood. Some days I would wonder why I have to go through it. Then, I would tell myself that it could always be worse. Whenever I am going through a tough time, I try talking to myself as if I was trying to help give advice to somebody else. I have found this to be the most effective method of helping myself mentally. It can get difficult living with the many obstacles brought by fibromyalgia, and sometimes I feel like giving up. I tell myself that other people are going through similar issues, and that hopefully one day I can inspire others going through this as well. Another cognitive technique I try is to think about how far I have come. I used to have trouble leaving the bed, but with all of the methods I am trying to help myself, I have found myself to feel much better overall. I now work and am able to visit friends more regularly as a result. I think I am living.

Real talk,

Melanie J. Wajda



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