Happy Birthday? Another Year with Fibromyalgia

Happy Birthday? Another Year with Fibromyalgia
My birthday was a few days before Christmas. It’s a day I have enjoyed since I was a child. The only difference is I no longer look forward to advancing another year in age. This is not so much about the fact I am nearing 49 years, but that I have been deprived of "life" for 21 years due to fibromyalgia. While I do not like to acknowledge this fact as if it were an anniversary, it is something that follows me like the proverbial monkey on my back. It is because of this illness that I insist on celebrating the events I can, for few events bring happiness. As many who have the illness already know, the onset, symptoms and  treatments, differ from person to person. My personal journey began around 1996. I was going through a divorce from my college sweetheart, one of the reasons being undue stress from having post-traumatic stress disorder due to repressed childhood trauma. I think fibromyalgia may have a genetic component that, in combination with added stressors, can put one at risk for developing the disorder. I recall many relatives, mainly on my maternal side, who had various rheumatic diseases (mainly arthritis) and chronic pain conditions (migraines, gout, bursitis). This family history may have already predisposed me, but then came the upheaval of stress hormones for six years (due to PTSD), followed by divorce, which brought on mild symptoms of chronic back pain and fatigue that I could not shake. Since I worked in a clinical setting, I had plenty of advice from health professionals who suggested taking time off or adding certain supplements. To have the general complaint of fatigue, one would think it was a simple fix. That is me — "Miss Fix It." I want to fix others' problems, and when it comes to health issues I am highly proactive. Before m
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