Monday, October 18, 2010

Happy Birthday To Me!

It's my birthday today but fibromyalgia doesn't know that. Like so many other syndromes, fibro doesn't differentiate between male, female, young or old. Wealthy or not so wealthy.

I turned 51 today. In keeping the status quo, I admit to feeling just as lousy as I did at 50! Everything is relative. Let me explain. Imagine that cliff-diving represents declining health. At age 19, my descent into the roiling waters of the ocean below was not exactly a graceful swan dive. It was more of an unexpected, untimely and very ungainly cannon ball.

In the 3 decades since, I've experienced the onset of numerous allergies, hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism which eventually led to full-on Graves Disease. My disobedient thyroid ultimately required 'nuking' (radioactive iodine treatment) to render it inactive. I've also had severe endometriosis, infertility, miscarriage and more surgeries than you can shake a scalpel at. My gallbladder had a hissy fit and required a permanent time out. I've had 3 surgeries for one lousy torn cartilage. Most of my surgeries were of a 'female' nature. Other than the removal of a few lumps and bumps, the last time I saw the inside of an O.R. was for a complete hysterectomy at age 41. It's a bit of an inside joke, but every New Year's day, my resolution has been to stay outta the O.R. Now, I can add fibromyalgia into the mix.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that my health has been a challenge for as long as I can remember. When I was 50 years old, I could honestly say that I didn't feel any different than when I was 20, which was lousy!!

In a strange way, I believe that having bad health for most of my adult life has softened the shock and impact of aging. I'm already familiar with the exhaustion, the sore joints, the aches and pains, although fibromyalgia has stolen my youthful flexibility.

I wonder how aging will be for people that have been healthy all their lives. Will they ease gracefully into their 'golden' years? Does the turncoat called aging set upon you as a sudden and massive system failure ? Maybe, 1 achy day turns into 2 achy days, then 3 until you scarcely notice it has become your normal existence.

Here I am, barely into my fifth decade and I feel no better or no worse than last year. Like bills in the mailbox, no new (syndromes) is good news Perhaps, the best is yet to come.

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