Monday, September 8, 2008

It might NOT be all in my head.

I feel like I've been very busy lately, even though I've mostly been just recovering from stress and lack of sleep.

I think I've discovered that there is actually a reason for my tiredness, weakness, achiness, and trouble sleeping.

In my few off moments lately I have been doing some research, and I have found out something helpful, and here it is: (drum roll please) My body is exhibiting 60% percent of the symptoms of fibromyalgia. So there just might be a real reason why I have felt the way I have for the last two years, and especially over the last six months.

All those constant aches? All that ridiculous fatigue, completely out of proportion to the activity? The depression? The migraines? Ah HA.

I'm not going to go to a doctor right now, mostly because, from what I read, doctors are extremely hesitant to make a diagnosis, but also because I can't see handing a medical professional ten thousand dollars to have him say, "I'm not sure what's wrong with you, but we can run some more tests." I can say that myself for free.

Oddly, the same symptoms can also be indicative of hormone imbalance (very possible for a woman of my age) or mineral deficiency. But there are other, more obvious, symptoms of hormone problems that I don't have, so I'm less inclined toward that theory.

My personal diagnosis opinion is that I have a problem absorbing minerals, or I use them at a high rate and am not replenishing them fast enough. (That idea comes from a home test I did using ph paper and spit saliva.)

But whichever it is, the solutions for all three problems are very much the same: Take calcium, magnesium, potassium, and maybe sodium. Cut down on stress. Get plenty of sleep. Drink water. Get a full body massage once or twice a week. Exercise. Eat healthy. Cut down on sugar and red meat.

So, for starters, I've been taking calcium, magnesium, and potassium three times a day, as well as some homeopathic tablets for aches, headaches and insomnia. And asking Hubby to PLEASE rub my legs and arms and back and head and neck and feet. Some nights that's the only way I can fall asleep, even doped up on minerals and pain reliever. (I am so blessed that Hubby is very willing to do that for me.)

Is it working? I think so. I'm sleeping better. Even though I'm still waking up around four in the morning with every muscle aching, I still feel more rested than I did before. (I'm thinking about getting something I can keep by the bed to take in the middle of the night.)

This knowledge is going to help me in other ways as well. For example, yesterday in church, about half way through the service, I found myself getting restless and cranky. I just wanted to get out of there. It happens a lot, especially on the days I'm on the worship team. A few minutes into the sermon I'm ready to LEAVE.

When I started to feel that way yesterday again, armed with my new information about my body-- instead of condemning myself for being unspiritual or unchristian-- I asked myself "is there a physical reason, rather than spiritual, for my feeling this way?"

And, lo, and behold, I discovered I was aching ALL OVER. That's why I could hardly sit still and listen. (I guess I'm not very observant with my body...) So I popped two ibuprofen, and found I was able to sit through the service, and even enjoy it.

Really, if this is my body's reaction to stress, it makes sense that I would often feel worst on Sundays and the day after, because there is some stress on Sundays: getting up and out earlier than other days, going through sound check and practice, being on stage, trying to plan meals when we have no idea from Sunday to Sunday what the day will pan out to be. Interacting with lots of people-- we love being with people, and feel energized while we're visiting, but since we are normally rather quiet, introverted people, we are very tired afterwards.

It's all good. But I guess it's taking a toll on my body just the same.

Now that I know what's going on, I'm sure things will get better.


Ornery's Wife said...

I just recently read a post on the website about liver cleanses, and wonder if that wouldn't cure a lot of your ills. The article was actually about a different topic, but the liver controls all that stuff so you might be able to see some significant results by treating it. It couldn't hurt, at any rate!

I hope you feel better soon!

carrie said...

*hugs* I would say that you are probably smart not to bother with the doctors because I don't know for sure but I think there's really not a whole lot they can do for fibromyalgia (I can never spell that one right...) Glad hubby is willing to rub you up so you can sleep better!!