When I was 15 I was diagnosed with #fibromyalgia that was said to be triggered by a car accident. Suddenly, the normal struggles that accompany those transitional teenage years, were even more of a challenge to navigate. I felt alone, uncertain, frustrated, and completely trapped in my body and circumstance. I was a 15 year old young girl who felt like an 80 year old woman. Years and years of competitive dance suddenly slipped through my fingers and became a distant memory. My once confident and outgoing personally became unsure and embarrassed of my situation. Most people had no idea what I was dealing with because on the outside I looked "fine& #34; . There was no real "proof& #34; that anything was wrong with me. So I started to pretend. I pretended like I wasn't in crippling pain every day when in reality I constantly felt like I had been hit by a bus. I pretended like it was just the Fibro that made me extremely exhausted and want to stay in bed all day instead of facing the reality that I was slipping into a depression. I pretended like I was just a normal teenager who was rebelling and dabbling in things that were addictive and harmful for me instead of just admitting that I was desperate to numb the pain. I pretended like everything was fine and that I was happy and never talked about the fact that what I really felt was crushing anxiety most of the time. All this pretending caused me to put on layers of "protection& #34; that then started to produce a sad, inauthentic, confused, co-dependent, young adult. At the time I couldn't see it for what it really was. I only became frustrated with myself and decided to just sweep my issues under the rug and do my best to "get over it" and practice "mind over matter" . As you can guess, this just led to total denial and more numbing. A sad cycle of frustration.
But friends, I am NOT that girl anymore. To be completely honest, most of the time I forget she even existed. I no longer live a life of pain, sadness, anxiousness, frustration, confusion, or co-dependency. My life has shifted in BIG ways. I am happier and healthier than I have EVER been in my life, and I am on a mission now to help others to feel the same. #ampeofibro