Hello, & Welcome to
I am Robert Busby, and will be posting to Men With Fibromyalgia every other Friday! Today I want to tell you our story, about Fibromyalgia Symptoms & Care.
My wife Ann came down with a chronic pain disease in the late 1990s that caused her to have mood changes that came on suddenly that curtailed her ability to do day-to-day activities.
Over just a few years her mental and physical abilities slowed down so much she was not able to continue in her job she loved and she had to retire with a disability retirement with what was diagnosed as Fibromyalgia.
When all of these pain and Fibromyalgia Symptoms started, I was working full time as an intelligence analyst and special agent with the Department of Defense (DoD) and had my own similar issues, but being a Retired Army and DoD guy I did not pay attention to my own ills if I could avoid it.
There are many days Ann was and is not able to get out of bed and if she can get out of bed she is not able to leave the house due to feeling so run down, no energy and lots of pain.
I was having similar Fibromyalgia Symptoms but thought my issues which were not keeping me from working or from taking care of Ann when she needed care were due to my exposure to Agent Orange and many other such toxins while serving in the Army.
There were and are days where Ann is pain free and able to do many normal day-to-day functions but those days are limited but at least Ann can get out and about every so often.
My issues with pain and memory loss were getting worse as time passed but not enough to keep me from doing my job and taking care of Ann.
In the second year of Ann’s pain issues it was obvious she was going to have to work from home or just stay at home till she was able to bounce back from pain issues that were causing her to have for lack of a better phrase, brain fog, and until she could get enough energy to function.
As time passed I knew I was going to have to take a more hands on approach to assisting the love of my life Ann through these pain and energy issues.
Ann and I both read all we could find on Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue, and Pain issues while attending monthly Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue support group meetings in order to get a better idea of what we were dealing with and maybe understand how we could fight these ills.
As days, weeks, and months passed Ann and I both got worse, many days she could not get out of bed so her life was curtailed to reading and watching TV and those issues continue today with the exception she has good days and bad days so at least she can get out of the house every now and then.
My pain and brain fog issues caused me to take an early retirement a year after Ann retired so I could be there for Ann and assist her in any way possible as well as deal with my own issues.
We have had ups and downs because of pain generated situations causing us to have communication issues resulting in our feelings getting hurt, but we have managed to resolve those flare ups and try and understand what we did to cause those flare ups and hurt feelings so those hurt feelings did not get out of hand for either of us.
We have not completely resolved hurting each other’s feelings on occasion but we work very hard at doing all we can to make life together fun and exciting in spite of the pain and brain fog issues.
I do most of the day-to-day house hold chores while Ann does what she can when she can so she will not feel like she cannot contribute to our relationship and on those days I am down and she can, Ann takes care of me and the chores.
One has to be careful and not make the other feel like they cannot participate in life events when they want to, Ann and I both try hard not to make the other feel bad about having to rest and not deal with anyone or thing as needed.
Both of us have to pace ourselves and not do too much at one time just because we can since we know pain and brain fog will catch up to us and knock us for a loop if we are not careful.
We do not get out as much as we use too, we have to cancel lots of appointments – activities – parties and such due to her or my ills (heart, IBS, brain fog and pain) causing one or the other of us to be non functional on the day or hour of an appointment.
Sadly some folks do not understand why we have to cancel at the last moment, they saw us earlier that day or week and we looked fine, well kind of fine, and they do not understand why we have to cancel neighborhood functions.
Ann is experiencing some memory loss (so am I) or maybe just misplacing the memory for a moment or two due to all the pain meds and pain issues and that causes some issues at times, but we both work hard to reduce hurt feelings caused by saying something the other feels is hurtful.
Ann has the worst of the pain with her Fibro flares and I am a close second but am able to get out more than Ann does to do the chores and to do list but most of the time it takes both Ann and I to deal with our issues.
Those of you who have, or know someone with Fibromyalgia Symptoms, know there are days the person with Fibromyalgia has no energy and cannot even be around anyone due to the pain. That means no phone calls, no guest, just rest and rest is different for all of us.
Being a care giver for those in pain is not easy and until WE are exposed to such chores we do not understand all the issues of why the person with Fibromyalgia cannot do something when they look and sound just fine.
I will try and type more about our Living with Fibromyalgia Issues along with the getting older problems along with all that it takes to take care and or assist a person with Fibro and Pain issues.
Founder of Fibromyalgia Support Group – The Villages, FL