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January 31, 2008



Fibromialgia of the soul

Oh perfect, perfect. That feeling of every mental move hurting both physically and psychically at the same time, and nobody on the outside having any clue. And the ice floes. Yeah. I went through some of that last year without even the stressor of having small dependents, unless you count the animals, and then there's the big-dependent-who-shouldn't-really-be-that-dependent, and that's another story. Did not even have the excuse of winter -- I was sad and angry all spring and summer.

Do you want to know how long it lasted? Nine months. Hmmm... I seem to remember a certain significance to that number. Let me think.

Through it all, my best friend was wonderful and supportive over the phone and talked about stuff her therapist had offered up, about depression and women in their early-mid 40s and how the two -- surprise! -- go hand in hand. About how you find yourself at a point in your life where suddenly it's less about potential and plans and dreams and all about what's ON YOUR FUCKING PLATE. Which pretty much never -- surprise! -- matches all that potential and plans and dreams you had. Anyway, she said it much better than I can and I'm sure her therapist said it even better than that, but at least no one called it perimenopause. I swear if one more person said the word perimenopause to me there would have been bloodshed.

And for the record, in my personal Big Book of Dysfunction? Imagining cutting yourself (or driving off an embankment, or beating someone to a bloody pulp) is not in the same league as doing it, and sometimes helps. If the though bleeds over impulse, then you worry.


The last two weeks my ice flows were melting beneath me and I was ankle deep in water.

And don't even think about stealing all the glory for being "single handedly responsible for the downfall of civilization, global warming, greenhouse gasses and Dubbya". I helped.


I want to say that I am sending you love. I know that does not fix stuff, but I also wanted to say I can understand why you might have all the feelings you described. I know this blog is only a miniscule part of your "real" life, and when I add up all the stuff you deal with regarding your children and husbands and work and friends and all the nurturing you do for so many people, I want to say, What about you? YOU. I know you are a brave person and say to yourself, but I can handle all this, but maybe you need someone or a something to help you handle it? I hope you take the time that you need for yourself. That sounds so trite, but I mean it in a nontrite way. I hope you feel the love though.


It's taken me awhile to be willing to come back to this post. I don't like the space and avoid it when I can. Generally that means I repress stuff and it all comes back to bite me anyway.

Lisa - wow - what an incredibly powerful response. I know I didn't say it because I was avoiding being here but when I read that, the day you posted it, you made my day. It is amazing, the benefit of not being isolated. Thank you for that. I've been hearing the word perimenopausal since I was 35 (that would be almost 9 years ago). I still want to punch someone.

RW - thank you for the sonnet. I saved it.

Kmoo - I'm so sorry, I hope it gets better for you soon. In the words of my mother... 'I will sacrifice some virgin chickens for you post haste.' and in the words of my daughter... 'I keep the crazies in my head and a dinosaur in my pocket' (because how can you take anything too seriously if you've got a bloody dinosaur in your pocket - it's plastic, don't panic).

Amy - it helps a lot, thank you.


Oh Sweetie....where to start?

Fibromyalgia: it is as much a condition of the soul as of the body. I've been diagnosed w/ fibro since 1993 and was suspicious as to the cause of all the physical pain for several years before that. I've asked myself over and over, "Am I depressed because I hurt, or do I hurt because I'm depressed?" I remember the pain starting first, but it realy doesn't matter in the long run. There's only so much stuff we can handle before things start to go seriously out of balance. It's interesting to me that the vast majority of fibromites are Type A, highly intelligent, highly motivated people, the "go-to" people. I tried to be all things to all people all the time: wife, friend, successful woman in a VERY male-dominated field, mother, teacher, musician, et. al. During those last months when my husband's parents died, my grandmothers died, and my daddy died, I was trying to keep the family together, keep working, keep a sense of "normal" when there was nothing normal going on. I look at it now and say "No WONDER you feel like shit!" and I'm not even really considering how premature menopause fit into the equation.

But it all comes back to a time in my life when I knew what I wanted and deliberately decided not to go after it because, hey, I needed a paycheck. Thank God for second chances, best friends (some of whom I've never met in person!), good therapists, good wine...and time.


Go Cielo Go.

I believe we all know what it is we need to do, and we are absolutely responsible for doing it in the moment. Appearances are not what life is about.

love to Alecto.


I think you need a massage. I just happen to know this great therapist... ;-)


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