I have never taken the easy way out in life; in fact, I am best known for doing things the hard way. But when it comes to pain management coping skills, I view it as a way to cheat.
The phrase cheating death is well known and means that a person has overcome all odds of meeting the Grim Reaper. I personally think one can view their pain management skills for Fibromyalgia in the same manner since anything that helps you cope with the physical pain, anxiety, depression, migraines, and fatigue is helping you cheat the death of a normal life.
When I was first diagnosed with fibromyalgia in late 2005, I did what every sufferer does by researching all the information available on what is now known as a disease. Back then, there was very little known about it. So little, in fact, that it was labeled a syndrome. Many doctors, and some even to this day, believe that Fibromyalgia was something made up in one’s head.
After an extensive search on the subject, I did find some useful information about alternative methods of coping with Fibromyalgia that could be used in conjunction with pain medication. I became fascinated with these alternative methods because they were simple enough for me to incorporate into my daily life and easy enough to make me feel like I could cheat death in life very much like the romantic poets of the 19th century. In other words, experiencing all of what life had to offer was very important to me.
Simple things like curbing my processed food intake just by label reading in the food store was something easy for me to do, and it gave me the passion I needed to try to reclaim a full life. It was a daunting task in the beginning when I was reading War and Peace in the bread aisle, but once it became second nature, I started to make it a game just to put a little more zip into my steps at the food store. I started to realize that the longer the label, the more unhealthy the food, and by scanning quicker, I could move down the aisle faster. More steps meant more movement for my joints and another way to cheat.
After I mastered these two tricks, I tried to find even more ways to cheat with harder areas in my life. Stress is one of those hard areas for me. I tend to bottle up my emotions and that’s never a good thing. When I find myself getting anxious, I try to meditate. Meditating on a flower or a happy place can be a little difficult when your mind is racing in a hundred different places, but you can cheat here too. I have a zoo of animals in my house and some of those animals are fish. For me, concentrating on my fish in their surroundings calms me enough where I can focus on my deep breathing. But you don’t need a fish tank to use this cheating technique. A painting, candle, or viewing a sports match will help you achieve your goal to relax. The point is to use those things as your point of reference so you can focus on deep breathing to get out of the anxious situation.
Depression, migraines and fatigue are things that become more overwhelming for me during the winter months. And I cheat these by upping my Sam-e, vitamin D, and vitamin C intake during the days I am unable to go out as much due to the weather. I also take naps when I need to.
Cheating death in life as you know it can be accomplished with a little creativity, passion, and self-love. May you avoid the Grim Reaper by being your fabulous self!