Time is Running Out!
May 03, 2016
EVENT: Together Walk Richmond
EVENT DATE: May 07, 2016
In hindsight, my symptoms started as a child and young teen. My symptoms were mild at that time, and I wrote them off as growing pains and weird dry skin. I think that the growing pains were the start of fibromyalgia and the rashes were the beginning of lupus. My body started screaming at me at 26, and I was diagnosed with lupus (sle) and fibromyalgia. I had ups and downs, the rollercoaster of chronic illness, until I was 34. Then everything seemed to switch gears again, and the pain was insane. I couldn't think clearly or remember anything. I put clothes on in the wrong order or forget something altogether, tried to brush my teeth with handsoap instead of toothpaste, and put liquid dishsoap into my coffee. This was even worse at work. I forgot people called me, forgot to follow up on nearly everything, and couldn't remember what half of my job duties were. It was horrible. I have severe cognitive dysfunction, so even if I could think through the pain, my higher cognitive reasoning was offline. It was really time for me to stop working when my supervisor said as much back in 2009. I cried and cried, and then I got mad about being sick. It took me years of therapy and the rock solid support of my husband, Shenandoah, to get me somewhat stable. Then I had to find a new identity, a new purpose. My self worth had been so tied to my job that I had to reinvent myself. This is a difficult task while fighting depression and pain. Oh, the pain! I do what I can, when I can, and try not to do too much, because that always has unpleasant consequences. Amidst these struggles, I found a support group that was perfect! It is a bunch of people with so much in common with me that it has truly changed my life.
So grab a pair of walking shoes, roll up your sleeves, and meet others who want to make a difference. It’s time to make fibromyalgia visible in historic Richmond, Virginia! The Richmond Fibromyalgia and Chronic Pain Association invites you to participate in the inaugural Richmond Together Walk!
The National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association is joining forces with local organizations like ours across the U.S. to launch TOGETHER WALKS in 2016 to raise fibromyalgia awareness and research funding. Passionate Leaders have already taken the lead for 2016 in Richmond, Portland, Coral Springs, Salt Lake City, Louisville, and a Virtual Online Walk.
Fibromyalgia is a chronic disorder whose symptoms have a devastating effect on patients' lives as they limit their ability to engage in everyday working and social activities, and make it difficult to maintain normal relationships with family, friends and employers.
Your voice matters in changing how fibromyalgia is perceived, treated, and researched. Simply invite your family, friends, neighbors, colleagues, along with health and elected officials to come stroll, walk, learn, meet others, and support funding for fibromyalgia research at the Together Walk – Richmond 1K Walk on May 7! TOGETHER WE CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE!
How do you answer a 13-year old’s questions about his hopes for the future after being diagnosed with fibromyalgia (FM)? What happens in the homes of parents with FM who cannot participate in taking care of their family? When will better treatments and a cure for this disabling disorder be found?
Through research/innovation seed funding raised at Together Walks, new exploration in areas such as small fiber neuropathy, cervical cord compression, and myofascial release may bring promising new treatments.
Can you imagine what can be done together when there is a walk in every state and across the globe?
Fibromyalgia is a life-altering condition affecting 2-4% of women, men and children of all backgrounds worldwide to suffer. (That’s 10 million Americans alone.) The disorder can strike suddenly or occur as a gradual increase in symptoms, indicating changes in the central nervous system (neuroplasticity). Sensory information (such as light, sound, and touch) becomes amplified by the CNS, causing the brain to respond with increasing pain and symptoms. FM severity waxes and wanes; often increases over time; and may become disabling.
FM takes its toll on once healthy individuals, especially between ages 20-60. Escalating stress and fear of what might lie ahead if symptoms worsen can contribute to anxiety and depression. There are no cures for fibromyalgia; however, as with any illness, some symptoms can be controlled with carefully improved lifestyle changes.
FM is a physical disorder, not a psychological condition. The most common constellation of FM symptoms (widespread chronic muscle pain, sleeplessness, relentless fatigue, cognitive dysfunction, and a host of other overlapping conditions like TMJD, IBS, migraine, interstitial cystitis, metabolic syndrome, endometriosis, and vulvodynia) can wax and wane over time.
The Richmond Fibromyalgia and Chronic Pain Association thanks you for your continuing support and looks forward to walking with you.
If you are interested in hosting a Together Walk in 2017, please contact the NFMCPA at firstname.lastname@example.org.