When you tell someone you have Fibromyalgia, you can almost feel them roll their eyes in their imagination. For so long, fibromyalgia wasn’t considered something “real”, it was just a label that meant “aches, pains, fatigue, and brain fog that we can’t figure out”. And you know what? It’s STILL a label for all of that. The difference now is that is considered a real disease.
I know it’s real, because I live with it everyday.
This is not a sympathy post. Everyone has something, and most people with much worse conditions or situations to deal with than fibromyalgia. That doesn’t mean fibromyalgia is just something you have to live with and try to handle yourself. Yes, some days will be bad. Very, very bad. You may not even get out of bed. There are other days, though. Good days. On those days, it helps to move around and get your life back.
I desperately want my life back.
I have really tried everything to feel healthier. I had a condition called Arnold Chiari Malformation in my brain, which caused the cerebrospinal fluid and all the other bodily juices to not flow correctly in my body. Yes, people, in addition to medication, dietary changes, stretching, massages, and all of that, I even had brain surgery to try to feel better.
My headaches are much better. My joints? Ehh…not so much.
So, I have been on a mission to get back to my healthy self. I don’t mean I want to look better in a bikini (which I do want one day), I mean I want to feel good. I want to be healthy again. I want to be able to walk around the block and lift the milk jug and have the energy to make it through the day without a nap. I went from hard core workout queen to a 90 year old lady shuffling around my house.
I have done a lot of things lately that have helped me feel a ton better. I did them all at once, like I do everything, so I’m not sure what helped me the most. I love all the things I’m doing right now, though, so I’m not changing anything! Ha!
This is what I did:
- Gluten-free and mostly grain free
- No sugar
- CBD Oil
Acupuncture and Chiropractic Treatment
Since I had brain surgery, my deductible for the year was met. Quickly. That was very fortunate for me, because it allowed me to have acupuncture and chiropractic treatments without having to pay out of pocket. Check your insurance and see if they provide benefits for those services, because they have helped me immensely. Acupuncture has been the absolute best thing for me, I think. In addition to feeling better all over, it gives me a chance to be still for at least 20 min whenever I get a treatment. That’s huge for me.
Gluten, Sugar, and Grain Free
I eat pretty clean most of the time, but I decided to try gluten-free to see if I saw a difference. I did. I had much less pain and my fatigue lessened. I also cut out sugar and grains. I’m a salt fiend, not a sugar girl, so cutting out sugar wasn’t hard for me. For some reason, these food cause inflammation in the body and I guess I was inflammed. Is that a word?
I can feel a difference. I don’t know how to describe how I feel. Umm…fresher? Does that make sense?
CBD Oil. Love it. First of all, this is not marijuana. I’m not getting high. That’s THC. This is CBD. Totally different letters. Did you know you actually have CBD receptors in your body? Well, you do. And my receptors were really wanting to receive. I use the 500 mg CBD Oil from HempWorx and I take it orally. If I have a really sore spot, I may rub a little directly on that spot. The pain has lessened considerably. I’ve even felt good enough to go to the gym. Like…this is legit stuff.
I can’t do yoga. I mean, I can, but I don’t want to. I like to stretch, but yoga is not my thing. Fortunately, my mom ran across this program called Essentrics. I am not affiliated in any way, but I feel like everyone should know about this! It’s just…awesome. It’s about stretching gently, but deeply. There’s some barre work, if you have a day that you feel you can do it. There are about a million videos on their site, but there are a few on YouTube for you to check out. Some are 3 minutes long, some are an hour. Just do what you can do!
I didn’t want to take medication if I didn’t have to. Turns out, for my particular situation, I needed to. I tried Cymbalta and it made me feel crazy. I didn’t like it. Being in pain is one thing, being in pain and crazy is a bad combination. My doctor then put me on Lyrica and it works so well! No craziness at all, it just takes an edge off the pain so I can be a better mom and not yell at my kids because I’m in pain.
Now, I’m definitely not a medical professional, so don’t take this as a post on how to cure fibromyalgia. All I know is that all the above worked for me, and if you are in pain all the time, it stinks. It took a lot of trial and error for me to find a good combo that would allow me to function better, and I sincerely hope that you can live your life without pain.