I ran across a Facebook post by Cindy over at FibroColors mentioning that Morgan Freeman had been living with Fibromyalgia. Now I’m a huge fan of Mr. Freeman and almost every movie I’ve ever seen him in. So I have to google it. The first link that pops up is an awe inspiring article by Tom Chiarella. “This Earth That Holds Me Fast Will Find Me Breath” The Morgan Freeman Story absolutely gave me chills. It even brought a tear to my eye.
If I’d have been alone, no doubt I’d have cried hard upon reading the descriptive words about how Freeman’s life had been changed. How he could no longer do the things that had once brought him so much joy. What hit me even harder, was how he simply took the same pleasure in just walking his land in Mississippi.
Here is a man that rode horses every single day, used to sail himself out to the Caribbean for two to three weeks at a time and took up piloting jets at age 65. And he
is ok has accepted just living in his body and doing what he’s able.
I have met quite a few people in the last month via twitter and Facebook that are becoming family to me. Spoonies, if you will. (If you haven’t read the spoon theory please take a minute and read The Spoon Theory written by Christine Miserandino). The term spoonie has become a nationwide term for those of us living with a chronic illness. I see their stories, share their pain and live with them.
So often we feel helpless and alone. We can no longer take pleasure in doing the things we once loved. We are all in different stages of our lives. A grieving or mourning process takes place. We lose family and friends who are judgmental because they simply have no way of understanding what we go through.
I don’t blame them, how could you possibly understand? I still do not. I myself have trouble accepting that I can no longer ride my horse, run around chasing my 4 year old or even fold laundry without putting myself into a flare of pain that could last days or even weeks. I can no longer pursue my own career as a cake decorator. (Visit Lena’s CCC to see what I used to do [shameless plug]). My hands and eyes just don’t work so well anymore.
So what I offer you is this; mourn, grieve, be angry about the loss of your old self. Its OK but embrace the new. Find out what you can take pleasure in doing. Whether its reading to your kids, walking on a trail, stargazing, singing, or talking to others who KNOW and understand. Do something for yourself.
If you happen to be reading this and know a spoonie, try to be open. Listen to them talk. Even if you can not relate, just be thoughtful and let them know you still care. We understand you need to mourn the loss of the person you once knew. Yes, we have changed. We are trying to learn to love ourselves but we STILL love you.