We have all heard about the woefully closed-minded doctors who believe Fibromyalgia is just a symptom of depression. Research proves that depression doesn’t cause the pain of Fibromyalgia, but there is an undeniable emotional component to the condition. Which came first, the chicken or the egg – Fibromyalgia or emotional distress? I like to believe I was an emotionally stable person on the day I broke the toilet with my head and began my descent into Fibromyalgia hell, but if I am truthful with myself, I was not/am not as strong as I like to believe. So does the fact that I try to control my emotions instead of deal with and process them make me more susceptible to Fibromyalgia? Good question!
Yesterday I participated in a very emotional support group meeting. We had an unusually small group which allowed for more personal and intimate conversation. It was not a depressing meeting, but instead it was a discovery into how traumatic events in our lives feed and contribute to the pain of Fibromyalgia. I struggled all evening after the meeting trying to process what was shared, and I am struggling as I sit here trying to write this post. Where do I begin to explore the connection between emotional trauma and pain? There is so clearly a connection. Can any of us ever be symptom free without fully exploring and coming to terms with our emotional traumas? What is the best way to do that? Therapy, meditation, EFT, hypnosis, writing, art, diet, exercise, drugs? I clearly do not have the answers and my head has been pounding with the pain of trying to figure it out.
I am feeling some responsibility as a support group leader to look for answers to this question and provide resources to my members so they can begin to heal their emotional wounds. So, anyone out there have any answers? Is this starting to sound like a cry for help and guidance? I think maybe it is! The thing about Fibromyalgia that makes it so hard to treat and so hard to explain is that even though we all share many of the same physical symptoms, the emotional component means that no two of us experience it in the same way. I store my abandonment issues in the muscles of my upper back, but she stores her traumatic and failed marriage in her shoulders, and he stores his 10 years in a violent job in his chest. Not only do we all store our pain differently, but we process it differently, and we respond to treatment differently. While writing helps me process, painting helps her, and singing helps him. Is your mind spinning now too? What do you do that helps you cope and process? And which came first, the pain or the emotion? Anyone?