I Won’t Apologize For Having Fun While Dealing With Fibromyalgia

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Thirty, Flirty and Thriving… kind of.

I am 31 years old, single and I live with chronic pain and fatigue from fibromyalgia. Don’t feel bad for me. It’s not a death sentence. Is it a challenge? Yes. However, I have visions of a life I want to live, and I refuse to let my invisible disease stop me. (Don’t get me wrong, I have days where I can’t do it all, but, stick with me).

I was officially diagnosed my freshmen year of college. College. A time for learning, and growing, and having fun. Time to make memories, mistakes, and really start living. And let me tell you. I did. College was amazing. I lived on campus, made friends, learned a lot about myself, the world, and what I wanted to do and accomplish. I got the full college experience. And the fun didn’t stop there. My college experience helped me realize that although I do have this awful problem, it doesn’t need to run, or ruin, my life. 

This is an extreme example, but, I always had a dream of going skydiving, but, due to my disease I wasn’t sure if it was a good idea. Will it be too much stress on my body? Will it make the pain worse? What about the quick altitude changes? I stopped questioning, and started living. I’ve now gone 4 times, and plan on going a lot more.

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I joined an adult kickball league with my friends. I go camping, and hiking, and to the beach. I walk around the town I live in and I go to brunch and breweries. I spend days walking around Philadelphia and bar hopping with friends. I go on dates. I volunteer. I am an aunt (the cool, best aunt in my opinion), and I keep up. I run around, I hold the babies, I bend down, I pick them up. We play, we laugh, we snuggle. I go to the gym and take classes like yoga and kickboxing. I go to football and baseball games. I tailgate. I go to picnics and play games. I go sledding and play in the snow in the winter.

You don’t have to prove your illness to ignorant people

I LIVE MY LIFE. I thrive in my life. I enjoy the hell out of my life. 

It’s hard when you do have bad days, because people look at you and see all you do. They see all your snapchats, Facebook and Instagram posts of you out and about, looking like a “normal person”. And then you have a day where you can’t get off the couch. They start to ask if you’re really “sick”, or you just are being lazy or looking for an excuse to cancel plans. They see you post about how much you are enjoying and living your life, and they start to question you and your integrity. So much so, that you question yourself. Did I push myself too hard? Should I have not gone to that concert? Should I have skipped the beer festival? The answer is always NO. Do not skip it. Go. Enjoy. Live. Haters gonna hate.

Many people don’t understand what you are going through. It’s more than physical pain. It’s depression, anxiety, fibro fog. It’s an unfair balance of good days and bad days. And when you have good days (or even okay days), you need to embrace them, and enjoy them. Any person, in pain or not, should have to be confined to their houses and beds while battling something so awful. Mentally and physically, it is so important to get out and enjoy your life. It is YOUR life to enjoy, no one else’s. Go to dinner. Get a drink. Go bowling. Go see that movie. Don’t be afraid.

If you get anything out of what I have to say, it is to never, ever apologize for having fun and enjoying life while dealing with this invisible disease. It’s your life to live, and you have every right to enjoy it as much as anyone else. This is a lesson that I need to remind myself daily, but, since embracing this mindset my life has never been better. 


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