I’ve been keeping a low profile over the past few weeks. I don’t think it’s the holidays, per se, but it seems that my fibromyalgia has decided that it’s been stable for too long. So I’ve been riding the fibro roller coaster for a bit. I didn’t want to write on a really bad day because I didn’t want to sound like that whiner on the commercial. Besides – who can even think on some of the fibro fog days, let alone put thoughts together in print?!
Christmas brought that flare-up that lasted from Tuesday (Christmas Day) until Friday afternoon. Even after all this time, I still amazes me that fibro flares can be so unpredictable. Friday morning was not much different than Thursday night had been – back and neck pain, headache. Took a brief nap mid-day and voila – the pain was almost gone by Friday evening. I was so grateful!
Saturday morning I had plans to attend the ordination to the diaconate of the candidate we prefer for our new rector. (Imagine that! The Search Committee was unanimous about something after a year of work; it had to be the work of the Holy Spirit!!). The ordination was at Christ Church Cathedral, in Springfield, MA – about an hour’s drive from us. I wasn’t driving this time, so I could relax on the drive. I woke up Saturday morning feeling really good. Gave thanks to God for the reprieve during that service. Four of us attended the ordination. Since only one person was being ordained, the number of people attending was not huge. But everyone there was a believer who was willing and eager to participate in the service. What a difference that makes!! It’s so uplifting to worship with people who want to be there, believe what they are saying and pray like they mean it! It’s depressing to worship with people who practically whisper their responses (like they’re afraid someone might hear them) and lip-sync the hymns while other people sing (do they think we don’t know?).
After the ordination, there was a lovely reception held. Episcopalians surely know how to entertain. We got to see some folks from the diocese that we’d met at other functions. I think it’s important to remember that we don’t worship in a vacuum – we have an extended family.
The sun came out Saturday after a foggy morning, so the afternoon was really pleasant. I wonder sometimes if I have S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder). That’s the disorder where lack of sunlight causes you to be somewhat depressed and lethargic. Symptoms include wanting to gorge on carbs then hibernate til spring. I know someone who has this and it really caused her problems when she was in college in Ithaca, NY, where they have inadequate sunshine all year round. Maybe I should ask her where she got her “happy lamp” – a bright light that convinces your brain the sun is shining. I could sit under the happy lamp while I tried to write this. I might even feel amusing again.
Sunday morning was a rude awakening. My reprieve was over. The pain and headache were back. I guess Saturday had truly been the grace of God. I had to serve at the altar Sunday morning – not an easy task with pain, fibro fog and medication dragginess working against me. Again, the grace of God was there and I didn’t make any mistakes.
After church, we went to the market. There’s snow predicted for late Sunday night into Monday morning (my usual grocery day) so I thought it better to go Sunday afternoon. So did the rest of the world! I can’t remember the last time there were so many people shopping on Sunday. It finally occurred to me that, in addition to the pre-storm “panic” to bring out shoppers, Monday is New Year’s Eve. All those parties can’t happen without food!
Monday morning I woke up wondering if the plow had made a detour into our bedroom and run me over before he finished his work on our road. I think waking up with a headache is one of the more annoying fibro flare symptoms I have – it really starts the day off on a sour note. My husband had to take time off work in the morning to take his father in to the hospital to get a shot that’s part of his chemo regimen. Dad was feeling tired and worried about the bad roads.
I made it through Monday with a minimum of medication. That feels like a victory because the more medication, the more fog and the more “lost time” in my life. I even got all my plants worked on today. I love having real plants – though mine have to survive on a bit of “benign neglect” from time to tome. We didn’t do anything for New Year’s Eve that we don’t do every other evening – watched hockey on TV and played computer games to keep my mind off any pain.
Here we are at New Year’s Day – 1/1/2008. Happy New Year to those of you who get excited about it! In our house, New Year’s Day is the same as every other day. We don’t get very hyped up about holidays of any kind around here. The same plow must have come through last night, even though it didn’t snow. I feel the same on the first day of the “new year” that I felt on the last day of the “old year.” I guess fibromyalgia didn’t get the memo about a new year coming and changes that could be made.
I have never been one to do a lot of reflecting over the year past or to make resolutions to make the new year better than the old one was. I live in the present. Today is the only day that matters and I try to make the best of each day as I’m in it. And it seems to me that this resolution business is just that – increasingly, personal resolutions (lose weight, get fit, etc, etc) are becoming the fodder of commercialism. Everyone wants to cash in on your private failings. Everyone wants you to pay them to help you become the better person you want to be. Unfortunately, no one can do it for you.
If I were to make a resolution, it would be to push myself a little more to do what I need to do, even when fibromyalgia rears its very ugly head. Not that I don’t do that already. I do. Which means this will be a resolution that might succeed. I refuse to set myself up for failure!
To the rest of you who are struggling with your resolutions – relax! Just worry about the next minute, the next hour, today.
Best wishes to all for a happy, healthy, prosperous 2008.
Now it’s time for my mid-morning fibro flare nap!