Full Letter from Sue to the NFA in 1997

June 30, 1997

My Short FMS Story

I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia in January of 1997. I am lucky enough to have a psychologist who was able to refer me to a wonderful rheumatologist. After long consideration, I realize I have had this condition since a major car accident in 1987. Too bad I didn’t know then that the remaining pains and problems would remain. I had to leave my job of 8 years (at $25,000) a year. I now am able to work only part-time, and only make minimum wage. Yes, the financial blow has been horrific.

I used to suffer from mild to medium depression, but in the last few years, it has become major to severe. I attempted suicide in May of this year. I have finally gone full circle with medications for depression… I am now back on Prozac, and I am at least off the edge. I am able to keep myself safe now, but really only because the medical staid informed me that if I tried to kill myself again, (or even slipped into a deep depression where I could not care for myself) my daughter would be taken away from me (put into a foster home), and I would be in the State Mental Hospital. I truly believe that FMS is the cause of my increased depressive state.

I can no longer take care of my yard or my home. Some days I cannot drive, and when I can drive, some days I cannot do the shopping once I am at the intended destination. It is increasingly difficult to share in my daughter’s life, as she is quite active. I am frightened for my future… there is nothing left to hope for. This will not go away. But I am better with it now on June 30 than I was on June 1. I have accepted this thing that I cannot control. I eat as well as I can, I walk when I can. I have to use a Health Walker in my hime, as my vision and balance are quite unpredictable. I don’t have to worry about falling.

My back constantly hurts. My right knee, my arms, hands, wrists, and elbows hurt. Because of this, I can only crochet or needlepoint for short periods of time. Because of my vision problems, I cannot read for long periods of time. I am always tired, and cannot seem to do what real moms and wives do. My neck and shoulders hurt most of the time.

Medications are the only thin helping me to sleep, keeping me off the edge, dulling my pain. My family dose not understand this condition that makes me this way… and neither do I. I think I am done crying… There are no tears left I have not gained anything. I am not strong or brave… I just am. I keep going because I have to. No one else can do it for me (or will they). There is little left for me to discover that would add to my enjoyment of life. I always knew and had the ideas. This just means that much more that I won’t accomplish. But its is okay. I will muddle through without my chin on my chest. Everyone has their trials. This is mine

Sue from Utah