Sleep Better with Fibromyalgia


There isn’t a cure for Fibromyalgia and I’ve come to terms with the fact that there probably won’t be one in my lifetime.

Ugh.

The reason there isn’t a cure is because scientists haven’t even figured out what causes it.  This puts Fibro Warriors in the interesting position of doctoring themselves cause frankly, we probably know more than they do since we’re the ones living with it day to day.

John is always saying things like Are you sure you should do that?  Maybe you should talk to your doctor first?  or If your doctor doesn’t believe in that, why do you?  They have years of training….  My response of course is that I went to doctors throughout my 2os who had years of training and not a single one even figured out that I had Fibromyalgia.  I have however had a kabillions tests and was told that I might have a brain tumor, epilepsy, ovarian cancer, MS… I could go on for pages, but I won’t.  That being said, I am at the point where I’m pretty skeptical about the healing powers of doctors when it comes to Fibromyalgia.

Feeling utterly alone in my search for healing, I began keeping journals, reading everything I could get my hands and put myself in charge of my health.  My first step as Dr. Margo was to form my opinions about what’s going on in our bodies which I’ve discussed here in various posts.

What do we know?

We know that our nervous system is working in overdrive.  As a result of this, our body is trying to compensate.  Because our body is stuck in fight or flight mode it is constantly trying to protect itself which results the malfunction of other systems of our bodies.  Our digestive tract, our eyes, our skin, hearing, smell…

So…  My logical conclusion was how do I calm my central nervous system.  I have to turn off the switch that told my body to be in constant fight and fight and return to rest and relax.  I discussed some yoga poses that claim to do this in my post My Carpal Tunnel Cure.  The theory in yoga is that inversion poses calm the central nervous system.  I do these poses several times a day in an attempt to calm things down.  But I felt like that wasn’t enough.  I was feeling better but I wanted to be better still.

Which lead me to meditation.  Don’t roll your eyes like I did.  Keep reading.  What’s amusing is that in all the Fibromyalgia books I’ve read (which is a ton!) not a single one talked about meditation.  They mentioned deep breathing and cognitive behavior therapy but never meditation.  I find that odd since meditation, at it’s core, is meant to calm the body.  In every yoga book I’ve read (also numerous) they speak of meditation which I promptly ignored.  I’m not gonna lie, the idea of meditation seemed like a time suck to me. I’m already busy enough and the thought of doing it every day seemed like too much.

Then one day when I was feeling especially bad I decided to try it.  I made a commitment to myself to meditate for 10 minutes a day.  That was about 3 weeks ago and I’m really glad I did.  Since I’ve started meditation I can say without a doubt that my sleep has improved 75%.  I have actually slept through the night on 2 occasions and most nights I only wake up 1 or 2 times.  I still have the occasional night where I wake up like 10 times (especially night that are filled with nightmares) but they are few and far between.

This is a huge breakthrough since sleep disturbance is a huge part of the problems we experience as Fibro Warriors.  Sleep deprivation causes muscle fatigue, muscle pain, memory impairment, exhaustion…   Our bodies need deep sleep to repair our muscles and minds.  Almost across the board, Fibro Warriors have sleep issues.  I went to a sleep doctor who told me about sleep hygiene which I followed and I believe it helped to a degree but it wasn’t until I started meditating that I really saw results.  Imagine how much better your life would be if you slept better?  That is the precise reason I started meditation.

If you’ve decided to join me in meditation you’re probably wondering how to begin.  It’s easy.  I downloaded a bunch of free mediation / deep sleep / hypnosis apps on my iphone.   I went through a lot until I settled on Andrew Johnson.  In my experience, he is the best. You can go to his website and listen to his apps.  His relax app, which was the first one that I used is free and the rest you must purchase.  I also bought his deep sleep app.  I do his relax app during a break in the day and do his deep sleep right before going to bed.  The girl who didn’t even want to do ten minutes a day now does it twice.

I’m not going to lie, there are days that I don’t want to do it but I do because I know my sleeps depends on it.  The idea of meditation is a bit daunting if you go alone but listening to a recording is simple. Just plug in your earphones and away you go.

Yours in health and less yawns,

m

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2 Responses to Sleep Better with Fibromyalgia

  1. DisabledMe? says:

    Hi,
    I really liked your post. You described fibromyalgia so well – it’s the same way that I describe it to my friends and family. I have use meditation to learn to relax my body and I believe it’s one of the best ways to help manage fibro symptoms. Personally, I don’t go to doctors anymore for help with the fibro – they don’t know how to help us, but I’ve found that alternative healing is the best mode for releasing the pain from our bodies. I was once so sick with fibro that I couldn’t leave my house for a year and a half except to go to doctor appointments. I couldn’t even hold a pen or a book in my hand. At that time the doctors I was seeing would tell me that this was the way the rest of my life would be and I was only 26 years old. I was ready to end my life because I couldn’t imagine living in that much pain for the rest of my life. As a last resort, I began working with a woman named Viviane Oberhand, who had been able to remove fibro symptoms from patients around the world using a healing technique that she developed in an effort to remove her own traumas and pain. Viviane gave me my life back. Since working with her, I’ve been able to return to work, I am able to go out with friends, and I have more love for my life than I’ve ever had before. I saw your post about your upcoming wedding – congrats! I also saw your worries about being in pain on your wedding day. I was thinking that maybe you would be interested in working with Viviane to reclaim your health – so you can put your worries behind you and have the wedding of your dreams! Anyway, I just wanted to let you know about Viviane’s work. I have some posts on my blog about the work she did with me and how it changed my life. If you’re interested, my blog is: http://www.disabledme.wordpress.com. If you have any questions or wanted to talk, I’m always open to making more fibro friends (it’s so much better to have people who truly understand what you’re going through). I sincerely wish you health and happiness.
    -Leora

  2. Margo says:

    Thanks Leora. :-). I am absolutely going to read your blog… I definitely think the only way to get better is by seeking an alternative route. Those have been the only methods that have worked for me too. I’m looking forward to seeing what you’ve done… thanks 🙂

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