Monthly Archives: December 2009

Fibromyalgia and Aging: Hope for the new decade

” To be seventy years young is sometimes far more cheerful and hopeful than to be forty years old”, Oliver Wendell Holmes

As we age each new year brings hope of change in a positive direction. Less pain, less fatigue, better quality sleep are the things I wish for. The new resolutions: try not to overdo like I always do on days when a flare-up has subsided; daily gentle exercises if only for a few minutes off and on each day; maybe take a music appreciation class (not like the class I tried to take to relearn how to speak French and had to attend class all day from 8 a.m. till 4 p.m conjugating verbs, ugh! The teachers were terrific, the program lovely but I had brain fog. After one week I quit, exhausted).october09 005 My new year’s resolution is to practice meditation more regularly; try new creative things but only gradually, not like I did with the quilting (I had never quilted before and by hand I sewed 4 quilts since Easter, without a sewing machine, now I suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome!). That seems like enough for me right now, the quilting (notice the Betty Boop quilt which is very uplifting!)and the French classes did me in this year.2010 163

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Male caregiving for the spouse with fibromyalgia

“Caring is pivotal to keeping the human enterprise going, yet its function is invisible in the organization of our daily lives”, Sheila Neysmith

This is my 50th blog and I have never yet discussed male caregivers! In my book I discussed with the women living with fibromyalgia the issues regarding the people who supported them (or in many cases, those who did not provide support or understand what it meant to be living with fibromyalgia) . Their answers often surprised me. I am one of the fortunate ones who has a husband with a caregiving nature. 2010 019He is my biggest supporter and without him I don’t know how I would survive the pain and fatigue. I generally feel guilty about the limitations of my life and how they have impacted on him. I have long wanted to write about the caregiving strain of coping with people who have invisible dis-eases while the work of the carer is itself often invisible. It can’t be easy since those of us with fibromyalgia usually look  healthy, and even the caregiver must wonder at times if we really are suffering as much as we say we are. The irony of all this is that women with fibromyalgia are usually in this state of hyperarousal of the nervous system because they themselves were once super-carers of others! Furthermore, the guilt we experience because others are taking care of many of our needs is a conundrum we are forced to live with.

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