My name’s Joanne but I prefer Josy. I adopted the nickname when I was 11 and I am now 40 (birthday during Covid lockdown so – I am still kinda 39 as I didn’t celebrate it).
I have suffered from fatigue and pain for most of my life.
The doctors said it was more in my head and if I thought more positive thoughts, I wouldn’t be so tired and run down.
After the birth of my daughter my life changed forever! I was diagnosed with cancer and I needed to have a full hysterectomy, chemo, and radiation. Long story short- I survived, but I could no longer have any more children.
Fast forward 13 years and I’m sitting in the office of a rheumatologist. He didn’t do any tests (like most specialists) and said I am hypermobile and that’s my problem because the extension is exhausting my body WTF?!?
I left his office in tears knowing something was wrong.
I have always known something was wrong for years.
I would have to decide what I could do each day- go food shopping or catch up with a friend because I couldn’t do both due to energy loss. If I went out with my husband, I would need to rest the entire day and night afterwards. If I bumped into something it would hurt and I would scream. The pain would last for days.
As a teacher- when writing reports for my 150 students, I would be exhausted for days. I found getting up each morning draining even if I did go to bed early. I tried everything! Vitamin B, berocca, energy tablets, vegan diet, intermittent fasting, naturopathy, acupuncture and so much more. Nothing helps.
I returned to my GP who was concerned about me and my lack of energy. The painkillers weren’t working and the way I was carrying myself because of the amount of pain I was in.
I was sent to an endocrinologist. She took my family history and sent me off for some specific blood tests and a bone density scan. I returned to her in a week and she told me some things that changed my life again. We all know that you cannot have a specific blood test to diagnose fibromyalgia but, the tests she did do, and my family history gave her enough evidence to diagnose me with fibromyalgia, hashimoto’s and osteopenia. She put me on a pain management plan and after 2 weeks I felt some relief.
I took some time off work to figure out what I would do. I was in shock and yet, happy that I had a diagnosis. I made a decision, and I went to a detox clinic (for health, not drugs and alcohol) in Phuket. It was amazing and relaxing. I learnt how to meditate and to relax. I found relaxing a great benefit. I made peace with my diagnosis. That was the biggest part of healing- acceptance!
I still work part-time as a teacher and I won’t lie, it’s exhausting, and I feel it’s time for me to leave my profession and become a qualified BA counsellor. I love teaching but, my poor body suffers, and, in my role, I am usually stressed emotionally, mentally, and physically. I have found when I am feeling stressed: I go for a walk, or to the beach to meditate. I do my stretches that my physio gave me. I take my medications properly. I see my GP regularly and when I feel a flare up coming, my new pain management specialist is awesome! I have surrounded myself with professionals- GP, physio, chiro, personal trainer, and my pain management specialist who all know and understand my condition. It feels really good to have the right people around me. Unfortunately, I am the only who is suffering and forever suffering ♥️
You can connect with Josy by following her on Instagram
Fibro Ramblings: Thanks so much Josy! I am so grateful that you have shared your story, as each face and story added raises Fibromyalgia awareness.