When you Got Fibromyalgia?

The brief answer is that in 2002 I was 33 and I took up running again after a four-year absence due to a ruptured disk that needed surgery to fix. When I began to run it became a real joy in my life. It was a mind over matter hobby that helped me to discover how far I could push my body and learn to listen to it at the same time.

During my running years, I knew already that my mother had Fibromyalgia and from there, her symptoms became something I learned about and talked with her about.

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So in late 2003 at 34 years of age, I began to experience some painful realities. For instance, when I would sneeze I felt a powerfully strong wave of pain flush through my upper body. The kind of cringe-worthy pain that kept me stunned until several moments when it disappeared or until I sneezed again which was normal since I typically sneezed twice in a row. This sort of pain I kept to myself and I’m glad to say that I don’t experience this as much as I did early on.

As a runner, I felt like I could run for miles and feel the better for it physically and mentally. So in late 2003, my second set of symptoms came with great discouragement when on Monday I ran 11 miles with such satisfaction that I couldn’t wait to push myself further on Tuesday.

But on Tuesday I experienced a fatigue brand new to me. No pain and no stiffness that seemed foreign to me but the fatigue worried me. I could not even run a half-mile without having to turn back. This continued to be sort of a pattern with me at the time. As healthy as I was there should be no excuse for this fatigue.

I saw my doctor and we went over my symptoms and landed on depression, which was and has been a true struggle since my high school days. Possibly I’m not sleeping well enough and lack certain vitamins. But these symptoms are not typical with fibromyalgia even if I trace back to this timeframe as my onset.

It wasn’t until 2007 when I sat down with my mother and knowing full well what she was going through it really was quite easy for both of us to fully self-diagnose me with fibromyalgia. From there it took a few years to get a doctor to believe what I already knew.

So this is my brief version, there are many years of loss and pain that only people with chronic pain live with could possibly relate to.

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