How has my marriage survived Fibromyalgia?

I logged onto Facebook this morning, feeling estranged and isolated from my Fibro family. This weekend absorbed all of me in physical pain and emotional anguish debauchery of lowered Prednisone dosing and all the joys that accompany coming off that drug. Just taking the dogs on a walk this morning picked me up and plopped me right back in the middle of Northern California, about 2007. Pick any month, the weather sucks all the time, and that feeling of every muscle screaming with the slightest movement and each nerve ending snaking and snapping pain throughout every inch inside of my body. Each steps a prayer closer to home. I truly battle between accepting that this is the new me post-strokes, and this is just the adjustment of coming off Prednisone and I will resume my nicely managed form of Fibromyalgia once this drug is out of my system (what my doctor thinks). Somehow I get the feeling it is not going to be that easy. 

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I glanced at my feed and my attention was drawn to a blog from the NFA about Fibro and relationships, marriage, and dating. This is something we ALL deal with, for we are not the people we once were, and hanging onto a relationship from then is very difficult. So is finding a new one with the limitations Fibro imposes. It’s a no-win, sticky situation. The author of the blog quickly discloses her 3 failed marriages and proceeds to describe how her illness impacted her first one, the man to whom she was married when she first got sick and received her diagnosis. She could not participate in the active social life they once shared (sound familiar?) and he went on without her. And that stopped me cold. Because it made me realize one of the key components of why my marriage is still successful is because my husband refused to do that. If we had plans and I was too sick to go, we canceled. If an opportunity arose to attend a function but it was after a long day of work for me, we declined. He would sit by my miserable and complaining and bitching and moaning aside, watching Law & Order re-runs, miserable himself I am sure. But he stuck by me. I felt terrible like I was keeping him in prison, begging and pleading with him to not quit his life because I had to quit mine, but he always refused, never a question in his mind that he would rather be with me as I was than without me anywhere.

So when I started getting better and living life again, we started living life again. And as we discovered the reality that mess of an illness left my life in, shambles and broken, it was our life to put back together again. I started hearing from him that he was so glad to be getting his wife back. Still to this day he is quite protective of our time and does not want to spend it with a lot of other people. How did I get this lucky? Beats the hell out of me, but that is what I got. It is normal, I suppose, to put your own needs above your partner’s or “the relationship’s” needs. But my husband was never that man. He wanted me by his side in everything he did or he was not going to do it. He has always been a bit obsessive, and our relationship is no exception. He has sacrificed in many ways, because of my illnesses. Yet last night as we are going to bed I shake my head and say, “This has been an insane life, a crazy last 5 years.” His reply was that it had been for me. I was the one all this crap had happened to. I asked him so what, then, he has just been along for the ride? He smiled and said yes.

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