First person I have interviewed is ALydiaByAnyName from Twitter. She is an artist, and writer. She keeps things positive.
What's your age?-- I am 19 years old.
What's your gender?-- I am female.
Where are you from?-- I'm from Fayetteville Arkansas
Do you have a blog?-- I do have a blog, the web address is http://mpdme.blogspot.com/
When were you diagnosed?-- I was diagnosed when I was 17.
How has your family and friends reacted?-- My mother was absolutely devastated. My older sister also has fibromyalgia, and we've been helping to take care of her and get her help for six years. My family has already been through this and know how difficult it is. I have a lot of support though. As for my friends, the ones I have that went through this with me and have seen my progression are really supportive. They helped me when I started getting anxiety attacks and they know how to tell when I need to rest. The new friends I've made don't really understand it, but they ask me lots of questions and accept it. They're all really supportive.
What is the hardest thing about fibro for you?-- The hardest thing about Fibro is probably the way people react. It was really difficult being in school and going through this, the principal didn't want to deal with the fact that I had special needs. There was a great special needs program, and we had quite a few students who were in wheel chairs but because I looked healthy he didn't even want to let me have a reduced schedule even though I had more than enough credits to graduate. If it weren't for the fact that I had a few teachers who had known me for years and saw what I was going through I wouldn't have made it. Also, with trying to get disability I was rejected because of my "age and education". For some reason adults like to think that just because you are young you're healthy.
What are some of your coping tips?-- To cope with the way people react to fibromyalgia, I'm incredibly honest. Just tell people up front that you have problems. If they don't understand or believe you and aren't supportive you don't need them. You know who your friends are really quickly when you have a disability. As far as the physical pain involved with fibromyalgia, the main problem I face is the fatigue and the inability to motivate myself to do anything. With pain, I just try to focus on something else and meditate. I can't ignore the fact that I don't even want to get out of bed. What works for me is taking walks, to get my energy up and to feel like I'm accomplishing something. This helps me feel a lot better. It's also imperative you are getting all your vitamins. Vitamin D, B12, and calcium are especially important.
What is the one thing you regret having to give up from fibro?-- Honestly, I think I've always had some level of fibromyalgia. I've never been healthy, I've never had any energy, I've always been in pain, and I never liked being around people. The only difference now is that it is much worse. I guess in a weird way I'm lucky because I don't know what it's like to be healthy, I don't know what I'm missing.
What is something good you've gained from fibro?-- I think it's made me stronger. I have a higher pain tolerance, and I don't let people put me down. I also know how lucky I am I have a support system and friends that understand me.
What changes have you made to make your day to day easier?-- The biggest change is taking vitamins and trying to exercise. I also have to watch what I eat since they can cause flare ups. I pace myself and plan out my day more. I have to make sure I get everything done, and I have to figure out the easiest way to do everything. I also cant let myself get depressed about it, because that makes everything worse. I have to learn to talk to people about what I'm going through and to make jokes about it.
What advice do you have for the newly diagnosed?-- It's not a death sentence. People can live perfectly normal lives. Do a lot of research on what are the best ways to take care of yourself. Stay healthy and eat right. Sit down and reassess your life. What are your dreams? Your goals? It might be more difficult to reach them now but in no way is it impossible. Find a support group and don't try to do everything on your own.
Anything else you want to add?-- Everyone's experience of Fibromyalgia is different. Just because you have it doesn't mean you know what everyone else is going through and just because they have it doesn't mean they know exactly what you are going through. For the most part you have to figure things out as they come along. Don't let other peoples experiences define yours, just take what they say into consideration.