Monday, June 16, 2008

I wish I didn't have to blame fibromyalgia

I've written a little on it before, this fibromyalgia thing. It's a weird, sneaky disorder. Sometimes it leaves you alone sometimes it wallops you, and sometimes it's just, well, more subtle. Take the exhaustion that comes from it. It's so everpresent that sometimes I don't notice when it's getting worse. I knew it was making a comeback after about three weeks of leaving me (mostly) alone; in the last two days there were two "attacks" (the ones that mimic low blood sugar episodes), but they were weak.

Last night I slept about ten and a half hours. That alone tells me just how tired and sore I was, especially since my sleep was restless. But after I woke up, made my coffee, sat at the computer for a while, and got ready for a job interview this afternoon...I fell asleep again. I was just plain worn out. The exhaustion came over me and I couldn't stay awake.

I wish there were a better reason for this. I wish I had been outside working all day yesterday, or that I had been compulsively been working on some sort of project, or that I had gone on a tear of cleaning up my house. But none of that is true. Exhaustion just hit me. There's little way to explain to people who don't suffer from this the emotions that come from this: regret, guilt, anger, frustration, sadness, depression, and no small amount of shame. Shame, that is, because I still feel responsible for having this. I still feel it's something I should just be able to overcome, that all I need is a swift kick in the pants, that somehow this is a result of choices I have made and not forces beyond my control. It's hard not to feel that I've failed my responsibilities rather than having been overwhelmed with one of the most invisible, crafty disorders in the world.

It seems that it might be better if it actually came with some obvious physical deformity, because then people would know you're not faking. As it is, you suspect that's what people think, because you wonder that yourself. Am I faking? What's wrong with me? Even in the middle of its worst, you somehow suspect you're just being a pansy. But believe me, when those attacks hit, I know better.

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