Breaking Down And Building Up


Mind the Polar Bears! Spitsbergen, August 2017

Things have changed this week.

FPR and I have been on another holiday – a five-day coach trip to Devon. Yes, it was very soon after our recent cruise but we just felt like going. Once we were there things looked slightly different.

Now, if you were to ask my baby son, he would tell you that I am a pessimist and, to a certain extent, he would be right. However, like many people with a chronic condition, when it comes to thinking about how much I can do, it’s a very different story: I am definitely grossly over-optimistic. That, of course, was what happened when FPR and I discussed taking this short break. I completely over-estimated how much I would be able to do during the holiday. I don’t see that as an altogether bad thing as it means I haven’t completely lost hope, but I realise that for FPR it is likely to be frustrating.

One thing that I have realised during the two holidays is that I really do need to have a look at how I live my life and what changes it would be wise to make. So, that is what I have started doing. Already! We arrived home on Friday evening and I started changing things this morning (Sunday). Pretty good going, huh?

During the time since I finished working, craft activities have taken up a large proportion of my time. I love to make things and I love to give the things I make to others, especially if the items could help them. Consequently I have huge amounts of crafting materials stashed in various places around our home. I have particularly large amounts of fabric and knitting yarn. I need to pass some of those materials to other people who can use them as I simply cannot do anywhere near as much crafting now as I was able to do a couple of years ago. Consequently, I am having to break down the life I was living and the activities I enjoyed doing and rebuild them into manageable pieces that I can cope with. As I mentioned above, I have begun that process today. I have sorted some of my fabric lengths and decided to donate several of them in a particular direction. Much of the stuff that I have was given to me to use for charitable purposes so, obviously, I must be mindful of that when deciding who I should give to. I think this process is going to take some time but I think it will be time well spent. At the end of it, I hope to be able to concentrate on using my energy on projects that give me a different kind of joy to that which I am used to experiencing through my crafting. In some ways, what I am working towards could be seen as quite selfish, but I feel that it is what I need to do to help me during these changing times. I need to find my new ‘normal’.


Was It Ordinary, Or Extraordinary?


Morocco, 2012

Something ordinary happened this week. Something extraordinary happened this week, at the same time.

No, I’m not talking about the hottest June day in the United Kingdom since records began (when was that, by the way? Does anybody know, or even care?). My description of the weather we’ve had this week would need to be subjected to heavy editing, so what’s the point of me wasting the effort of explaining?

Back to my original statement and I think I need to set the scene for you. The subject bears a massive build-up. The news is of such import that several national newspapers, including all of the broadsheets, naturally, have halted their respective print-runs to quote me for their lead story. OK, I may have indulged in a tiny bit of exaggeration there, but I’m sure you’ll agree that if I were telling the editors my story, rather than you, my lovely followers, they would be sure to recognise  how important a statement I am sharing here.

FPR and I have been away for a few days this week – hence the silence in these parts. Unfortunately, the weather decided to spoil our holiday. It was stinking hot and sunny,  for the entire time we were away instead of being cool and comfortable. The result was that I saw hardly anything and did almost nothing. I have disliked hot weather all my life: it actually makes me feel physically ill. However, despite the horrid heat with the added “bonus” of Fibro, I didn’t feel any worse than I do in any heatwave! In fact, once the thermometer began to look more like its usual self, I felt brilliant or, to be more accurate, I felt absolutely bl##dy brilliant! Better than I have felt for months, certainly since Christmas!

This week I have been mainly feeling like ME! Not Fibro me, but proper ME!

I didn’t realise how well I was feeling immediately – a bit like not noticing when a man has shaved off his beard – but, once I did, it was amazing. I have been able to do things over the past couple of days without having to work out when I’m likely to have sufficient energy. I have dashed about from one place to another, filling my day with various tasks and activities and even played football (well, more like foot-balloon) with my grandsons! I’ve been having a great time!

I admit that I was tired last night, but it wasn’t the Fibro tiredness and exhaustion, it was just plain old tiredness. In fact, it felt so ordinary that I almost felt happy that I was tired!

In my next post I shall probably talk about what I think might be the reason for how I’ve been feeling. Don’t miss it.


Hmm… I wonder

Electric tree in Singapore

Electric tree in Singapore

It’s been a quiet week, here in Bossymamma’s Fibroland. We like those: quiet weeks. We are perfectly happy to have a quiet week, every week.

As far as the Fibromyalgia is concerned, there really hasn’t been much happening. All that I have noticed is that I have been feeling a little tired. In fact, I have dozed in the chair several times this week. That is unusual as, for a couple of months or so, I haven’t been falling asleep during the day. However, I am not overly concerned: it is just a little tiredness, after all. I haven’t felt the bone-aching exhaustion or fatigue for a while now.

With the re-emergence of the tiredness, I have wondered if the Fibro is getting ready for another onslaught. Although I have wondered about it, I have not worried about it. At the moment, I am able to pretty much live my life they way that I could BF i.e. before Fibro, and I am making the most of it.

Fancy A Game Of Hide And Seek?

The Blue Mosque

The Blue Mosque

Do you know that feeling? The one where you are certain that you’re not alone but you can’t see anyone or anything? I don’t mean the spooky, scary sort of feeling, but more like the one where you are sure a child is playing hide and seek with you but you haven’t spotted him or her yet. Well, for the last few days, perhaps longer, I have had a feeling a bit like that one: except it’s not a person or an actual thing that’s hiding, it’s Fibromyalgia.

I have been having quite a few “mini symptoms” lately. What do I mean by “mini symptoms”? I mean where a symptom occurs but only very mildly, or for a very short time. I think the first time I really noticed the phenomenon was when Peter and I were having lunch with a friend, about 10 days ago. I had been feeling absolutely fine during my busy morning and on the drive to our agreed rendezvous (well I may have been a tad tired). However, not long after we sat down to lunch, I had an attack of dizziness. Luckily, it cleared quickly: it was a “mini” bout.

Another example happened a few nights ago. When I got into bed I found that I couldn’t get comfortable. I had had back ache during the evening but it seemed to be worse once I was lying in bed. Suddenly I was feeling pain all over my body. It was a feeling quite unlike anything I had felt before: quite simply, everything hurt. It really was a strange sensation. I don’t know how it happened, but I fell asleep very soon after the episode began. It was very curious.

I had another mini symptom today. I was preparing to cut some fabric when I had SOF: Sudden Onset Fatigue. I had to quickly change what I was doing. When fatigue strikes I have no idea how long it will last – it could very easily be days on end – so I needed to formulate a plan for what would help me most: it didn’t help that I was beginning to feel hungry. I managed to grab something to eat and drink whilst collapsed in a heap in a chair. An hour or so later, the fatigue had lifted. Very strange!

These mini symptoms that I have been having make me feel as though Fibromyalgia is playing Hide and Seek with me. It’s not letting me forget about it, it’s reminding me that it’s around and it can strike whenever it likes. However, I am coping with its game well. I am not running scared. I have been thoroughly relishing this period whilst I have been virtually symptom-free. That’s a lesson life taught me a long time ago: you’ve had bad times and you will again, but, in the meantime, make the most of the good times.

I don’t need telling twice!

What Is It They Say About “No News”?

Circular Quay, Sydney

Circular Quay, Sydney

There’s a saying about “No news” isn’t there? I expect you’ve heard it at some time or another. As with other sayings, it isn’t always correct, although sometimes it is. I’m trying to remember how the saying goes. It’s so annoying when something like that just won’t come to mind, isn’t it?

No news…

No news is…

No news is good news. Yes! That’s it! Definitely!

No news is good news.

Well, that’s why you haven’t heard from me for a few days…

No news is good news.

And it’s exactly the right phrase to describe how things are with my Fibro.

I’m not getting any symptoms at the moment. And, believe me, it’s great!

Tempting Fate


Since Peter and I returned from Australia I have been unbelievably well. Most of the time I have had little or no sign of Fibromyalgia. I have had a few minor symptoms but nothing that particularly impinged on day to day life. In fact, I have felt so well that I haven’t wanted to tempt fate, or providence, by posting on here about it.

Over the past couple of days I have had some tiredness and fatigue but it hasn’t lasted. It has made itself felt, but then dissipated once I have rested. Sometimes it has been persistent and returned quickly, but it hasn’t been difficult to live with.

I know I am very lucky and I truly appreciate it. My friend Anne warned me last week to remember the ‘spoons’ as in the Spoon Theory but I told her I wasn’t thinking about spoons. And I wasn’t: I was making the most of feeling like me. I have been going out, doing things I enjoy, actually arranging activities. I haven’t felt confident enough to arrange going out or doing things, for a long time so, Yah Boo Sucks to the Spoon Theory. I’ll think about it when I need to – and I don’t need to at the moment!

At The Beep The Time Will Be…

Istanbul at night

Istanbul at night

Well, it’s 9.00 pm here in Adelaide and 11.30 am in the UK. I am very thankful that my body clock has settled down and acclimatised to the time here. I was feeling totally disoriented in Singapore. It may have been because of the 16 hour layover, but I am inclined to think that my body’s difficulties were, to a large extent, due to the Fibromyalgia. In any event, I am now coping with the local time.

I slept long and well last night: from around 10.30 pm to about 8.45 am. However, I awoke with crippling back pain which was made worse by any movement. After breakfast my eyes began closing as they do when Fibro sleep is calling. I went back to bed and slept for a good couple of hours.

I cannot be sure whether or not the back pain was Fibro-related, so the only symptom I can really blame on Fibro is this morning’s sleepiness. I hope I am right and that this, pretty much, Fibro-free period is a remission, rather than being caused by Adrenalin. No doubt I will find out soon.

That’s A Change

Fairy Chimneys in Cappadocia

Fairy Chimneys in Cappadocia

Today has been a good Fibro Day! It started early: I was awake at 3.30am and, as I was still awake at 4.40am, I decided to get up.

I used my early start to good effect. I had been using my sewing machine yesterday and, after I had eaten breakfast, I decided to continue sewing. I took a break at around 7.45am and was pleased with what I had achieved by that time. Oh, what a welcome feeling it was, having achieved something easily!

At around 9.30 my early start began to take its toll so I decided to have a sleep. Well, I had been up for five hours so I think I may be forgiven! After sleeping I didn’t do much until lunchtime but set to with my sewing project in the afternoon.

It is difficult to describe how wonderful it feels to have had a ‘normal’ day, to have achieved something significant without having to keep having long rests during the process. I didn’t finish the sewing task I had embarked upon but that’s because there was a lot to do, rather than it being too much for me to manage doing.

The only Fibro symptom I noticed today was cold feet – before Fibro dumped itself on my doorstep I hadn’t suffered from cold feet for very many years. I almost welcome cold feet now! I did start feeling some back pain. Mind you, I think that was due to the cutting, pressing and sewing I had been doing, rather than because of fatigue.

Having a good day and, actually, a fairly good week, has given me such a tremendous boost psychologically. I am enjoying the good times while they are here! 🙂

What A Difference A Day Makes…

I’m old enough to remember the record that includes the lines:

“What a difference a day makes,
Twenty four little hours…”

However, I can’t remember the title, nor who sang it. No matter, it still indicates today’s theme.

In my last post, I was feeling absolutely brilliant. Oh my, how I enjoyed that feeling and that day. That’s the thing about bad times: if you have enough of them, or if they are bad enough, they help you to appreciate the good times. And that definitely applies to me, in lots of ways. So, I was thankful for my day of feeling great, and appreciated it as such: a good day. Not a week, or a month, but a single day. For that’s what it ended up being – one day. But that’s OK because it was wonderful, and it recharged my psychological batteries, and made me feel good, and eased the concern that certain people have about my wellbeing. It was a beautiful, bright and colourful day.

Yesterday and today have been less wonderful. I have felt a little tired. I have been able to do some hand stitching, be it only for about an hour at a time, interspersed with periods of elegant (?!? Perhaps not!) lounging around the house. However, it doesn’t matter that the good period lasted only one day. What matters is that I had a good day, in the first place. If I’ve had one, I can have more, can’t I?

And that’s what I am hanging on to!