Monday, June 22, 2009

Fibromyalgia and Humidity Don't Mix

Fibromyalgia symptoms differ so much from person to person that it's hard to find much about this topic out there. Everyone varies widely.

For me personally, extreme cold and extreme heat can really make my symptoms terrible. Almost unable to function.

So why do I live in the Midwest, in Chicagoland, where temperatures can vary 40 degrees from one day to the next?

I still feel like no matter what, this is where I'm supposed to be. This is where my job is. This is where Tim's family is and my family is all within 6 hours or less around us. This is where our church is. Somedays I want to throw in the towel and move away, but really, anywhere else has a handful of other problems. Moving away won't necessarily solve anything, although it's probably wise for some people to consider that. I'm not saying that's a bad thing, I just don't think that's the case for me. Instead, I learn to manage my pain despite the weather fluctuations, instead of moving away from them.

What exactly that means, I don't always know. Keep in mind, I've only had Fibro for just shy of 3 years. I'm still learning.

Today with the near 100 degree temps (and it felt like more than that with the humidity, I think we were actually at about 93 degrees), I ended up having too many errands to run to allow myself the luxury of noticing. Ultimately, that means paying for it tonight and possibly tomorrow. But it's okay, I'm allowing myself some pushing this week because Wed morning we leave on vacation until Friday night - woo hoo!!!!

We are only going about 2 hours west of here, renting a little cabin in a 400 acre state park, and it should be really great. Have we had to adjust our thinking about what we would do there with the upper 80s/low 90s anticipated this week? Absolutely. Have we cancelled our plans? Absolutely not. I think it's still important to live out as much of my life as I possibly can while making necessary adjustments. That's what I can do, so that's what I'll do. It's not what it would have looked like 5 years ago, but such is life.

God has blessed me with Fibro and while it's a daily struggle, I still know this is meant for me, for his purposes. So this week (when it's hot, humid, and we're under a heat advisory for at least 2 more days), it means ducking inside as quickly as possible, praying that wherever I go they have good a/c (and generally leaving if they don't), always carrying water around with me, replacing the batteries in my portable fan I carry in my purse, being thankful I have short hair now that isn't touching my neck, getting used to seeing my face horribly red and sweat-stained on a regular basis, educating people on Fibro even more than usual when they give me that why do you look that way? look, sitting under the ceiling fan in the dining room while I type this despite that I lowered the a/c to 69 degrees (our house is goofy, our internal thermometer says it's 76 in here even though the a/c is set at 69), and getting in arguments with hubster because he doesn't like to turn the a/c on in the car until we've been moving for a few minutes and my body has started to rot. {{sigh}}

If we had guests right now they'd be freezing. My mom would have on a sweatshirt and curled up in a blanket. But she knows how hard these temps are on me and is very supportive even through the shivering.

Gosh I love my mom.

I realize more and more these days that there are certain reasons you have to be sorta selfish. I feel bad that has to happen, but if I don't, it could mean lots of regrets later because my body is in a flare.

That's it, I need chocolate.


~~Deby said...

oh I know this one..I live in the Seattle area and as you know this is the Pacific North WET !!!!!...I am sure if I was in a dry climate..well I believe that it would improve....I guess we just do the best we sure can be hard somedays...some weeks....etc...

Josh and Jess said...

Hi there, I'm a Christian women with fibro, too :-) I know what you mean about extreme cold or extreme heat - although I don't mind the heat so much. I live in New Zealand where it's almost always humid and chilly... :-( If you like, come and check out my blog on

God bless and take care!

Vikki G said...

I can so relate living here in hot and humid south florida! Today it was 97 but the heat index of 100! Don't get out much in the summer unless it is in the morning or somewhere where there is air conditioning. It is true..those of us blessed with these lovely diseases learn to live and survive differently than we used to but We are Surviving and Living! So for that I know each and everyone of us is grateful. May the Lord bless you and your hubby as you leave on vacation.