Monday, April 29, 2013

Long But You Guys, This Is Seriously So Groundbreaking For Me...

Driving through the desert, it's endless expanse of pastels and light, I find myself in the deepest trenches of thought a person can find themselves in. The lack of thick greenery and buildings lends itself to the automatic self inquisition I'm so often prone to get trapped in. Thankfully, I know this desert like I know my own skin. Each turn and straight leg of the trip is like an old friend, a neighbor you wave to when you see them yet you don't really even take notice of them because of the familiarity of their face.

The desert. It can do two things to me, depending on which direction I'm traveling. If I'm not headed toward the Pacific Ocean, what it does to me is not good. It's unhealthy. It's toxic. It's like the long walk down death row toward an electric chair. Too graphic and dramatic? Um...have you  met me?

Guys, if you don't already know me "Hi, I'm Allison. I'm super dramatic.". That sums it up pretty well, don't you think?

So here's the thing. Last night we were headed back from a little work vacation in Las Vegas and as we got on Interstate 15 headed toward Utah I felt it kick in. The dread and sadness I get so often when I am headed in that direction.  I went silent in the car, Mike knew to turn up the tunes and to keep to himself because these are the times he's used to. He's seen this a million times and he knows how this goes.

We live in Utah. When we moved here we were inspired to do so and we always knew it would only be for a few years. It's now been 5. This was never supposed to happen.  We moved here to be close to my sister and her family and to get a fresh start, yet we weren't prepared for what it would do to me.

Within 8 months of living here I was receiving treatments at the Huntsman Cancer Center in Salt Lake City for acute anemia. Guys I literally was almost dead. I couldn't process iron which is apparently required for life. The next thing to happen was my fibromyalgia. I'd had it for years and years but the second we got here it seemed to intensify by about a billion times.

So that's where we are. I'm in pain literally all the time, trying to mother all of these kids and be a wife and work and function and guess's not working. It's just not.

So when I go to California I feel like a million bucks. I keep telling myself it's because I'm selfish and I just like living by the beach and to suck it up and that it's in my head. See, when I'm there, and I'm not kidding, I am...


Zero. Nada. I have to take no medication at all. Here?  Well let's just remind everyone that last April I had seizures for a month because of the medication I was put on by doctors trying to quell my symptoms here in Utah.

So here's the thing, I have been telling myself it's in my head. I keep saying "There is no way this is real, you're making this up, you just like the beach" because really, who doesn't like the beach? And if you don't, well I don't even think we should be friends. Truth.

So I got home last night at 2 am, woke up this morning and felt like I'd been hit by a freakin' mack truck. Like, SLAMMED. Couldn't walk to the bathroom. Climbing stairs felt like I was walking on hot pokers. It was ridiculous.

I called my doctor. He said for me to log onto their website and do a bit of research. See, Fibromyalgia is still something they're learning about daily. I've been diagnosed for 14 years now and what they knew then is different than what they know now.

So I get online and seriously, within seconds I find this:

What Weather Factors Affect Fibromyalgia Sufferers?
There are five major weather factors that appear to affect fibromyalgia symptoms. These include:

  • Temperature: Rapid changes in temperature can sometimes trigger a fibromyalgia flare or help to ease fibromyalgia pain. Cold weather tends to make fibromyalgia symptoms worse, while warmer weather tends to ease those troublesome symptoms.
  • Barometric Pressure: Barometric pressure is a measurement of the weight that is exerted by the air all around us. On beautiful sunny days, barometric pressure tends to be quite high, but during a storm or similar weather front, barometric pressure drops suddenly. Fibromyalgia sufferers often find that these changes in barometric pressure can trigger muscle aches and pains.
  • Humidity: Absolute humidity is a measurement of the amount of water vapor present in each unit of air. When absolute humidity is low, fibromyalgia sufferers often report headaches, stiffness, and flares in widespread pain.
  • Precipitation: Precipitation is the term used to refer to any type of water that falls to the ground from the sky, including rain, sleet, snow, or hail. Precipitation is often accompanied by a change in barometric pressure, and therefore may exacerbate your symptoms of pain and fatigue.
  • Wind: Whether it’s a light wind or a gale-force wind, wind generally causes a decrease in barometric pressure. This means that wind can trigger fatigue, headaches, and muscle aches in fibromyalgia sufferers.

So back to the whole point of this. I live in the Utah desert. There are trees up here but it's DRY. It's cold. It's got almost zero humidity. It's windy. It's stormy.

Basically, it's toxic for Fibromyalgia sufferers.

Can I tell you that I'm typing through tears right now telling you that I am so relieved that I'm not crazy? Utah is toxic for me. I can't live here anymore you guys.

I just can't.

Now if we could just find Mike an amazing job like the one he LOOOOOOOOOOVES here in Utah down in California, I would move today. Like, no joke pack up whatever clothes we needed, put the beds and couches in a truck and go. Dump everything else and just go.

I need to not hurt you guys. We get one life...and I'm wasting mine by being in pain because I live where it hurts.

Help. I need help.