Working with fibromyalgia

All your fibromyalgia experiences, questions and answers.

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Re: Working with fibromyalgia

Postby Jodie » Tue Jan 29, 2013 1:40 am

Hello! I'm not sure if you're still checking this post but I've been through exactly the situation you are in so I thought I could help.

I'm also 25 and was working as a field ops manager travelling the UK working away from home 4 nights per week, working monday-saturday, on call over the phone until 11pm from 7:30am and physically walking around and carrying my rucksack about the place all day every day. I can imagine being a midwife is sort of similar. definitely as many hours in any case.

I found that, though I could do the job, I paid for it dearly and I found that, when you're in the situation, you make yourself do it because you think "i can beat this" or "I'm not weak and if I quit then I am" but actually the strong thing to do is to push away from what society tells you is 'strength' and do what is right for you. It's harder to admit 'defeat' (which is what it feels like at the time) than to keep soldiering on.

It's only having stepped out of that situation in to an office job that I can see how utterly ridiculous I was to do it to myself. I was in constant pain, I cried every other day, I felt crushed by it all but I thought "at least people will see that I'm not weak and I'm not pathetic". Well after about a month of mentally beating myself up about it, telling myself I'd failed and I'd let it beat me, I realised that I'm not meant to be working against my body, I'm meant to be working with it and that not pushing myself to my limit takes more thought and more courage than doing the opposite. People will sometimes say that you are lazy or you just need to 'try harder' but you will learn to ignore that and listen to yourself.

It's not really even about what you are 'capable of' it's more about finding what you are willing to sacrifice and what level of illness you are willing to live with and weighing that up against other things that you get from making the sacrifice or causing yourself illness. Which is most important to you?

You need to ask yourself 'do I want to be successful at this job more than I want be free of pain and fatigue?' Whether you answer yes or no, you just need to feel that you've taken the time to figure out what you want independently of all the other factors because either way you will then feel in control.

Best regards
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Re: Working with fibromyalgia

Postby charlie9 » Sun Sep 01, 2013 5:40 pm

Just a little update:

Well I continued battling on and was getting progressively worse but occy health didn't exactly do much to make the managers have some understanding of the condition. They put me on night shifts and it totally messed me up, had an anxiety attack for no reason and felt suicidal on the shift. I then was written off work for 2 weeks by a kind and understanding Dr. (I have never ever been like that at work I've only once had a anxiety panic type attack and that was when my father had really upset me) Trying to make my return the staff were saying we'll take you off nights for a few weeks then when you're better you can start them again!! I knew nights were just a no no. I had managed them before as a student but I clearly could not handle it and when you have suicidal thoughts it's no longer a try and please your boss it's this is my life and I'm losing it. So sadly upon my return... I handed my notice in. I managed to work 30 hrs a week for 4 weeks then left. I knew it just had to be done, very sad but the severe mental health deterioration had given me a wake up call.

With many tears, I said good bye. I am now working actually a very physical job with my parents!! Being with parents has reduced any work stress and physically although hard and I am struggling a bit I am generally physically stronger which is probably a good thing and it is exercise. However, this is not a long term job as I know as the cold comes I will not survive it. But it has shown me what I actually can manage and has enabled me time to get to know what I can and can't do. I am applying to become a Health Visitor, something I was very interested in anyway as I have a real passion for public health. So I can continue a career in health and helping others hopefully without the brutality of midwifery. It will be stable hours and I am excited about the role and know I can continue to help others while also taking better care of myself.

Thank you all for your messages. I was so low with it all your were all very kind and supportive :-) xxx
The love from my dog helps me everyday. How can you not smile with a great dane charging at you with a wagging tail every day! x
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