Hope you’re all having a good weekend! Today’s feature on Spoonie Spotlight is Manda! Spoonie Spotlight is my way to use my platform to share the stories of others living with arthritis or an arthritis-related condition. The point is to share the realities of living with arthritis and to make others’ voices heard. (New posts every 2 weeks.) If you would like to participate, fill out the form!
What’s your diagnosis?
Fibromyalgia & Peripheral Neuropathy
When were you diagnosed?
How long have you had symptoms?
Have you been limited in any way from your illness? If so, how?
Yes; I can only work part time. I am restricted on exercise as well as simple daily household tasks.
What’s your story?
I began my journey with getting sick very frequently as if my immune system was failing. The next thing to change was I kept losing my balance more and straining / spraining my ankles. I got tired a lot more and migraines took over as well as sensitivity to light. After my I got married more symptoms took over; swelling, stiffness, pain in my legs, and my feet got really hot.
I went to several doctors and most said I just had depression. A neurologist didn’t know but put me on a high dosage of nerve medication. My blood work always showed high inflammation and the rheumatologist couldn’t find where it came from.
My gynecologist said it was most likely fibromyalgia. But it seemed like so much more than just that. I wasn’t diagnosed until 2009 at Cleveland Clinic. It only took 3 months for them to determine I had both of these diseases.
How has your illness changed your life?
It changed how I look at people, how people treat me. My friendships and my family. It changed my daily activities and how much I am able to work which lead to stacked high bills and no money for fun things.
What are your goals for the future? (Not related to your health)
To be a great mother. I hope to find myself more. Get back in shape and healthy eating.
What are your goals for the future? (Health related)
To keep on walking and push myself through some good physical activity. Because even though I will suffer the next day – that time is well spent and will pay off in the end. Go back to gluten free food. That seemed to help a lot of my inflammation.
Do you consider yourself handicapped or disabled? Why or why not?
I am disabled at times. I do have a cane that is needed and if I do not have it with me on bad days, I am likely to fall because I can be completely weak.
However, the social security department doesn’t believe fibro is a really disease and denies me.
What would you like readers to take from your experience?
I went through a lot of up and downs and I am blessed because I had my husband who believed me the entire time. Find a friend or someone who you can truly count on.
You may lose people in your life, just know they aren’t the right people in your life.
Fibromyalgia and Peripheral Neuropathy is not curable. I am not on any medication and I chose that because my body resists most medication. Find what works for you. I chose clean eating and walking.
Talk to people with similar pains, it is comforting. But don’t let them get you down. Have hope!