At the end of July, I had 2 strokes. Old news to most, new news to a few. I was diagnosed with a treatable and reversible form of Vasculitis, put on Prednisone, and sent home to recover. Now I will utilize modern medicine for many things but prefer to go as natural as possible as much as I can. Pancreatitis, give me the drugs. Vasculitis, bring ’em on! VICD, you bet ‘cha I will crush that virus with anti-virals. But day-to-day living and management of Fibromyalgia depend on lifestyle for me. I rely on a moderate dose of Neurontin and habit modification; reducing stress, taking my vitamins, exercising, cutting out processed foods from my diet, etc. I always believed that steroids were BAD and to be avoided at all costs. In retrospect it is kinda funny (in that sick and ironic funny way), when I was in the ER and the doctor told me he was going to do a Spinal Tap, which would require a minimal amount of steroids, I balked at him. NO STEROIDS I said. He smirked in a sad way that said I did not have a choice. So the irony is not lost on me that the treatment for my particular stroke-causing condition is high-doses of Prednisone for months on end.
WOW, that was a wild ride! Besides being a manic and frantic freak–out stress–case shaking with tremors, packing on the pounds from shoveling sugar down my throat, and growing hair all over my body, there were 2 good things that came out of that experience. “Normal” energy levels and NO Fibromyalgia pain! But here I sit, nearly 5 months later, slowly weaning down off the steroids and feeling AWFUL! Oh, I am in pain, unmotivated, sleeping 10-11 hours a night, lazy, irritable, thoroughly annoyed with everyone else’s emotional histrionics. No patience, no compassion, no sympathy; for the acute misery of life with Fibro is rushing back to me and it sucks a big fat toe! My logical side knows my body is finally getting a chance to heal and repair from the strokes now that I am not full of false drug energy. But my emotional side is having a hard time adjusting. I got used to doing 4-5 things in a day! I became conditioned to expect a certain level of productivity out of myself. I came to rely on unwavering motivation and boundless production. I was allowed to be my natural type A again with no consequences and I liked it! On my Prednisone high, I even fought with my husband over watching TV. I certainly did not have time for it, was way too busy to sit down and be bothered. Now I have to take breaks in between activities and have resumed my relationship with the television, putting her back in “best friend” status.
I will heal from this. I will go back to who I was before the strokes, just that much better for having survived yet another life-threatening crisis successfully. I will get Fibromyalgia back under my thumb. I will lose the weight I have gained, catch up on the sleep I have missed, resume the exercise I keep skipping, settle into a routine of fruition. I will move forward in my life. And it will be real, sustaining, long-term progress. Thank God there was a treatment for the strokes I suffered from, that the 8 more I was mere minutes away from having did not claim my life. Although the treatment has been brutal, it is, like most else in life, well worth it. For I am alive! I may be in pain, fog-brained, tired, sick of being sick, and totally unmotivated, but I will prevail. I will keep on keepin’ on because I have to. I have this one life to live and no matter what is thrown in my path, live it I will!
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