First, it was the naysayers who informed me that fibromyalgia wasn’t real–that it’s a trumped up condition created by people who are just plain lazy and don’t want to work. Then there’s the alternate theory that says it was created by the money-grubbers in the pharmaceutical establishment to sell high-dollar medications. I find this funny considering the fact that I still get up (albeit creaking, moaning, groaning and very slowly) at 4 a.m., work a full day (usually in a department where I stand All. Day. Long.) and come home to run a household and ride herd on two children who consider pestering the crap out of one another (and thereby driving mother insane) an Olympic event. As to the alternate theory, pills do not help. Not over the counter, not prescription. So, unless I’d like to pickle my liver and serve it later with fava beans and a nice Chianti, I think I’ll skip them.
And while we’re on the subject of ‘choosing’ fibromyalgia, let me just say that were I to cherry-pick an affliction, I’d opt for something that resulted in me being thin, firm and perpetually tan. And no, I don’t mean I want hepatitis.
Then, it was the nattering nabobs who said acupuncture was all smoke and mirrors, a waste of time and not ‘real’ medicine. Ponder this a moment: Plastic surgeons are considered ‘real’ doctors so I guess we’re to assume the saline-filled bubbles they sock into chicks’ chests around the globe (no pun intended) are also ‘real’ boobs? Yes, I refer to my acupuncture appointments as ‘going to the doctor’ but it isn’t just medicine, it’s an art. Placing a needle just so to relieve pain takes talent and patience, traits I tend to find lacking in most ‘real’ doctors. So, while you suffer side-effects from all those pills your MD shoves at you, my only one is feeling better. Who’s the sucker now?
Now, what’s left to deal with are the trolls who believe ‘I am hurting’ is somehow my call for the Pain-Scale Pissing Contest to commence. I do not consider my challenge, and that’s what fibro is to me, a challenge, to be the equivalent of acne-faced boys whipping it out in the school gym locker to see whose is bigger. Are we really that far gone as a society that we have to be in competition over pain and suffering?
To be clear, I hurt every day, all day. It just so happens that I may not hurt as bad as yesterday or even last week. If by chance I say I’m feeling pretty good, this does not mean I’m cured. It just means I’m not a panting, slobbering, dejected mess on the inside at the moment you asked. I AM NOT in some sort of competition with the world at large to determine who’s in the most pain. Of course there are others worse off than me and am I glad I’m not them? Yeah, you betcha. But it serves no purpose to belittle my daily experiences in comparison to someone else’s. You simply diminish everyone’s experiences and come out of it looking like an ass. Save face and skip your judgment.
One recent pithy remark was that my story never changes. Duh! And some folks are Judgy McJudgersons only on days that end in ‘y’. Ask yourself where you stand on the Douchebag Spectrum.
Bottom-line time: Spare yourself the angst and me your hot air. Smile your fake smile (And we all have ’em. I reserve mine for ill-mannered children and adults who shouldn’t be allowed in public without a shock collar.) and move on. I’ve got better things to do and a higher class of folks to do ’em with.