Fibromyalgia is a common condition characterized by long-term, body-wide pain and tender points in joints, muscles, tendons, and other soft tissues. Fibromyalgia has also been linked to fatigue, morning stiffness, sleep problems, headaches, numbness in hands and feet, depression, and anxiety.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Allergies or Fibromyalgia?

I still get the rolling eyes (or so it seems ) when I go to a new doctor and tell them I suffer from fibromyalgia.  I recently visited an allergist for the first time in 15 years because my allergies are beginning to seriously tread on my lifestyle and I want to know once and for all if I am allergic to wheat or dairy, among other foods.

I explained to the doctor that it's difficult for me to tell whether it's allergies, the fibromyalgia or just the fact that I am tired when it feels like a cloud has come over me smack in the middle of the day and I am so sleepy that I can barely function.  One minute I seem fine and literally the next I am looking for a place to lie down.

When I first researched some of the symptoms of fibromyalgia I learned that sufferers often have foggy-headiness, sleepy or tired feelings, and sleep disorders, which are some of the same symptoms of serious allergies.

When my allergies are at an all time high it literally wakes me up in the middle of the night because my throat, nose and eyes are so dry that I can't sleep.  I get out of bed and immediately put Visine in my eyes, saline in my nose and grab a drink of water.  This is happening even with a humidifier in my room.  I am sure this interrupted sleep isn't helping me feel very alert the next day, but I don't have to have this kind of thing happen to still experience a the wave of sleepiness come over me from time to time.

So which is it that is causing these overwhelming feelings of sleepiness?  The fibromyalgia, the allergies or the fact that my night of sleep isn't as restful as I thought it was.

I have mentioned this numerous times in my posts that sufferers of fibromyalgia can have a difficult time getting a good rest because the pain lingers on through the night.  It may not be enough to actually wake you, but it's there nonetheless and can become quite a problem if it persists.

I will be tested for allergies on the 29th of this month so I am anxious to see what might be causing my "obvious" symptoms but I'm not sure that will help me much with the other problems I am having.

One thing at a time, I guess, is the best way to approach this.

Until next time :)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Craft Show Bomb

In my last post I talked about getting ready for my very first craft show and was wondering how I would do it with my fibromyalgia.

Well, let me tell you, it wasn't easy.  First of all the show was a complete bust, not only for me, but all the crafters as there were few shoppers throughout the 2 days.  We were lucky if 1,000 people passed through.

 Second, I was so bored and so fidgety sitting for such long periods of time that I thought I might lose my mind.  I walked around and looked at all the crafts and talked with various people.  I took short walks around outside, but the temp was in the 90's and very humid so that didn't last long.  I even went so far as to go to the car and take a short nap to relieve the boredom as my husband manned the booth.

By the time the day was finally over I could barely walk I was so stiff from inactivity.  For me the worst is sitting or standing for long periods of time.  Ask me to walk anywhere and I'm good to go.  It's funny how this illness affects each of us.  My sister-in-law can sit for hours on end but can barely walk anywhere.

So, for me, the craft shows are not the thing to do.  If it weren't for my wonderful husband volunteering to work it on Sunday I honestly don't know what I would have done as I am sure it would have set me back physically to sit there another full day.

Maybe it was a good thing the show was such a bomb because now I don't feel the least bit concerned that I might be able to make some good money doing them.

I suppose the advertising (or lack of it) in addition to the poor economy had a lot to do with the turnout and maybe another show would be a completely different ball game, but I will never know because this will be my last.

As I mentioned in a post on my other blog, the good news is that my inventory is up for Christmas so I can't really complain.

Until next time :)

Sunday, September 12, 2010

My First Craft Show

I have a mosaic shop on a few places online and have always thought it would be fun to be in a craft show.  The problem is I don't know if I can sit or stand for 2 days and not be in a lot of pain.

My fibromyalgia seems to worsen when I sit for too long or on a hard surface.  I also have a bit of a problem with just standing around.  Now, ask me to walk a mile and I'm with you, but no sitting.

So, I wonder what it will be like for me to have 2 days of standing and sitting in a 10x10 space with nothing but a canvas chair for comfort.

My show starts at 10am on Saturday and goes until 5pm, then on Sunday from 10-4, so we'll see.  My husband will be with me and he is great about helping me with whatever I need so I know that I can take lots of strolls through the building and look at all the great crafts.

I sure hope all goes well, not only with my fibromyalgia but with the sales as it would be a nice alternative to just online selling.

Are there any artists or crafters out there that have any tips for me?

Until next time :)

Thursday, September 9, 2010

The Daily Grind

I haven't posted in a while because, frankly, I have been too worn out.

I am wondering how much fibromyalgia affects other functions of your body such as allergies.

I have read that people who suffer from this illness also have a heightened sense of smell, which I can attest is true.

I smell everything from the sawdust in the air at the Home Depot to the more obvious odors coming from a candle shop.  It gets into your sinuses and lodges itself there until you become foggy-headed and so very tired that you just want to find somewhere (anywhere) to go to sleep.

This season with all the summer storms has truly been a difficult one for me. I don't know if it's something in the air or the pressure changing but  I find myself looking for a place to lie down at least a two, if not three, times a day.  I can barely function when I get like this and it is so darn frustrating.

I know it's allergies because I have that metallic taste in my mouth and sometimes it gets so bad that it  starts to affect my gums.  My sinus passages aren't necessarily clogged, but the sensitivity is there.

I have also mentioned in previous posts that I am certain the fibromyalgia is playing a large role in the healing of my foot that I fractured 6 months ago.  I wonder if someone who did not have this disease but had the same fracture would more than likely be completely healed and fully functioning at this point.

I, on the other hand, continue to have some odd pain that keeps changing locations depending on what shoes I wear or how much I have walked, etc. 

One day the pain is in my ankle and another day it's on the underside of my toes.  I am pretty sure that the shoes I wore to the grocery store may have had something to do with it.
They have a small heal and may have placed additional pressure on the front part of my foot whereas my regular walking shoes do not.  I hope this is a temporary issue as I have a closet full of shoes I would like to wear some day. :)

I would be curious to know if others have these same problems.
Until next time :)