Work is our salvation and our cross. There are days when my job teaching handicapped adults buoyed me up. When the days that were more like lead sinkers severely outnumbered the good days, I had to go on disability as my pain doctor had suggested.
By all means, work when you can. But be aware that this horrible disease can make working impossible. (Could you work with level 7 pain, double vision, severe fibrofog, and irritable bowel and bladder all at the same time? I couldn't.)
All of the other puppy posts are good things to try. Over the years, we have had this joyous, exasperating experience with many wonderful dogs. Most of them became loving, well-behaved housepets. There was one notable exception. Poor Rachel had been one of a large litter born to a neighbor's dog. This neighbor lived alone in the one room of his house he kept warm with a wood stove. He and his dogs ate whatever he could find in his garden (along with all the leftovers I gave him!). I think the poor dogs were so deficient in protein that little Rachel's brain never developed correctly. She never housebroke and became an outside dog. She seemed perfectly happy outside, was kind and loving, and became my younger son's favorite. I think I was the only one who minded her being out in her doghouse in all sorts of weather.
It seems as if there are far to many women with breast cancer like your sister. It sounds like she is getting great care and is being monitored for the next stage of her recovery. She is lucky to have the medical team she has and a sister like you who cares so much. Of course, she is in my prayers as of this minute.
Speaking of this minute, it's been a month since I have been able to access this site. HughesNet is one big expensive thorn in my side. They told me I needed a service call on July 3. The repairman just left.
I'm getting my electronic nerve stimulator (on my spine) removed on August 16. They'll remove the electrodes from my spine, the power pack from my right hip, and the connecting wires as an out patient procedure. Guess how groggy I'll be on the 100 mile drive back home.
It's so GOOD to be back hearing what is going on in our FM "family!" There has to be some way for us to keep connected if our internet fails us. Any suggestions?
I finally did it. I shelled out the big bucks for the Cami Shaper by the people who make the Genie Bra.
As I've said before, I don't usually wear bras. I wear camisoles and sag. But those ads were so tempting.
Well, the 3 garments came last week. I tried them on to be sure they fit then washed them in my usual sensitive formula All Free and Clear.
Well I wore the beige one today. It was so comfortable. It moved with me and felt like part of my body. I liked it so much that I just ordered another set of 3.
I took note of others' view on the Genie Bra's sizing and ordered the CamiShapers in one size larger than I would normally wear.
They are more comfortable with those lifting pads out, but "the girls" stand up better with them in. Either way, they are even more comfortable than my cotton jersey (T-shirt material) bras that have no exposed elastic.
I'm from Wellsville, NY. Before cell phones, every phone in the area was a 593-XXXX number. That means there were no more than 9,999 phone numbers in the area.
We are lucky in having a pretty good small town hospital. We have a crop of docs who came through an Appalacian federal program back in the 70's and decided to stay after their 2 years. Now most of them are retiring or retired. We have to travel 100 miles to Rochester or Buffalo to see most specialists.
One thing we do have is a GREAT pain clinic. People come here from Rochester and Buffalo! What a switcheroo!
ONE REASON WHY YOUR MEDS MAY NOT WORK THE WAY THEY SHOULD
Those "creepy-crawlies" sound an awful lot like the symptoms you get if you forget to take your opioid medication--or if you are trying to stop taking them.
I think that some of the problem is caused by our generic medications. They--by law--are allowed to have from 75% to 125% of the stated dosage and still be considedred "equivalent." That probably works with normal people, but those of us with FM are not normal. This is especially true when it comes to how we deal with our meds.
The original brand name drugs are subjected to vigorous and lengthy testing both by the government and their manufacturers. The generics are more or less grandfathered in when the original patents expire.
Back in another lifetime, when I was young and single, I was a chemical lab technician for a pharmaceutical company. I found that one of the biggest way our pills differed from those of the generics was in how they dissolved in stomach acid. Ours were very carfully formulated to dissolve within a narrow 10 minute time band during digestion. The no-name stuff took as long as 24 hours to dissolve. Long before they could have disolved, they would have been further down into the digestive system where there was no proof they could be absorbed into the blood stream.
Now think about what would happen if SOME of your pills were digested as designed but others were not. You would have times when you had coverage and times when you did not. You would have some "24 hour" meds that lasted only 6 hours. Perhaps even more frightening, another "24 hour" dose might be a super-digester and all wind up in the bloodstream at once.
I often wonder about those competitive pills I tested so long ago. Our pills, the ones that dissolved when they should and only when they should, were Ortho Novum, the birth control pills. Our product was 98% effective taken as directed. I cannot believe that the generics could say the same. And I wonder at the cost in lives changed forever.
Now, with this in my mind, I can easily understand why the Duragesic pain patches worked for 72 hours, but the generic fentanyl patches give out in about 48 hours. And I am sure those of us with fibromyalgia who are the most sensitive of sensitized humans around are constantly being buffetted by changes in the delivered dosage of our medications. It does not matter whether the variation is caused by that 75-125% LEGAL variation of dosage in the pill or by the fact the the proper dosage is just not absorbed at the proper time. We are riding on a medication roller coaster.
I think this is probably one of the biggest reasons why so many of us--especially the long timers--choose to do without most of the prescriptions that didn't really help anyway.
About those abdominal adhesions. Let me tell you how mine went away. They were from gallbader surgery back in the 70's when they cut you deep and long. Well, in 2011 I had one of those electronic nerve stimulators implanted. The O.R. was set up different from any I've ever heard of. There was what looked like an upside down boot covered with gold tweed carpeting. That was to rest my pelvis on. There was a football helmet to hold my head. Between the two there was a lot of empty space and the O.R. floor.
After the surgery, I had incisional pain in my back. No big deal. What was a big deal was the horrendous abdominal pain where all of those old adhesions had been torn free from their "moorings" while most of my body was hanging down like a hammock between the boot and the helmet. It was awful. I went 12 days without a bowel movement, and I had every test known to medical science.
The adhesions are gone. It no longer hurts to twist my body. But I would NOT recommend that particular treatment for them.
There's something about losing a mother. For a year, I was "commuting" 300 miles to spend every other weekend (Wednesday through Sunday) with her and take her for her transfusions. The multiple mylenoma won.
All the pain, fatigue, and loss hit me like the proverbial Mack Truck. I had to go on disability way too early. But there was no way to continue teaching in such pain--even with the Duragesic pain patches. (The lowest dose was 25 mcg/hr. I was on 150 mcg/hr. and still in unbelievable agony.)
I don't think I will ever fully recover. But I know I will be able to live for my self and my family. Even on bad days.
A beautiful beach town with moderate termperatures. That sounds great. Let us all know how things go for you.
Kristen Thornton, who did the Fibromyalgia Network newsletter for so many years, lives in Pheonix. She obviously still suffers from her FM--even in a much dryer climate.
20 years ago, before heat was a problem for me, I was considering a move to that area. Then I read an article in Kristen's journal about how when FMers moved to warm, dry areas they did well at first. Then, in a couple of years, they were back to the same old aches and the same old fatigue.
The more I know about fibro, the less I know about fibro. All my life, I've hated winter. I could never really get warm. Enter FM. Now, I still hate cold hands and feet (a little Raynards?), but those cold, clear, BONE DRY days of January are the ones when most of my pains (other than those fingers and toes) go away.
Here's to warm (not hot) beaches with white sands, fresh breezes, and beautiful sunsets.
The first night I took Ambien it was a good thing that I put the top back on the vial before I took the pill. I don't remember a thing until the next morning. That was a 5 mg. pill of regular Ambien.
It was also 1990. Now it takes a 10 mg. pill to do the job, and it takes an hour or two to work. I take it with whatever snack and/or drink I have around 8 p.m. Since my body is now more tolerant of the Ambien, I only use it 2 or 3 times a month--when I really need a whole night's sleep.
Ambien is an amnesiac. This means that if there is any lag time before you actually go to sleep you will not remember what you did during that time. (I tend to make fruit and yogurt smoothies. I can tell by the state of the blender the next morning.)
This amnesia is even worse if you take the sustained release version of Ambien. People have actually driven their cars while asleep! I would never use this form of the pill.
The generic formula is available and is much more reasonable. It is not timed release. It works just fine.
Hope this info helps and that you are able to enjoy a restful night's sleep.
Cymbalta was one of the many that shut my bladder up tight. Ouch! (And where is that catheter?)
Hubby is on it now. It seems to be helping along with the Lyrica he is taking. Wierd, huh. He also seems to be able to go along without any major flares unless he absolutely abuses his body. But, of course, he's a 70 year old who still farms and works construction. There's a whole lot of abuse there.
Not fair. I stand up for 1/2 hour and my back is already 25 minutes into major pain. Hubby bounces around over rutted fields for 8 hours on his tractor, and he's still able to fall asleep in 5 minutes. Major Not Fair.
Hope you have a good experience with Cymbalta. It's worth a try and works for many of us. And if this is not the answer for you, there are many other options in the doc's bag of tricks.