Janey’s Month: Hello April

How lovely is it that as if on cue, the sun comes out for the beginning of April this year. Inspiring us all to come out of hibernation and –  some of us anyway – to strip off in parks.. all over London, to bare our winter bodies to the rays.

spring planting

I’m a bit of a creature of habit. A list maker – I go to bed with a pen and notebook beside me each night to write up the ‘ to do’ things for the following day.

April and sun? Obviously time to get in touch with Ollie, my dear and long suffering ‘garden help’ – without whom I would have been sitting on the corner of my bed sucking my thumb and gently rocking …for the last ten years!

Buy the plants that will probably die off the day after I plant them, as the dreaded unforeseen frost appears

Having made the call and arranged his return, the list says it’s now time to get to the garden centre to buy the plants that will probably die off the day after I plant them, as the dreaded unforeseen frost appears – and I rush back indoors to search for the roll neck sweater, slippers – and Netflix!

Obviously this happens most years – but because I’m a creature of habit, and also the eternal optimist – I carry on regardless.

I don’t believer in worrying about the future too much.  Pointless, as there’s nothing much any of us can do to alter the course of things, so getting our heads around the ‘what will be will be’ way of thinking seems quite sensible, and does take the pressure off I think, and stops – well me anyway, getting bogged down in  the ‘ what if’s ‘  and spoling a potentially spectacular day.

This weekend however, things have got in the way of my way of my natural optimism;  making me take a step back, and not follow my proposed plan.   I had, reluctantly had to concede defeat – again, to this wretched Fibromyalgia.

I’d had the nicest weekend..

Driving down to Sussex on Friday night, armed with a Spag Bol and a new set of garden gloves, the list of ‘jobs’  was long.

All eventually accomplished in record time, it left me space to frog march Teddy around the fields before cooking dinner and trying to stay awake to keep my partner Bill company as he watched MOTD – which was  his  reward tor hours of bone breaking work on my behalf.

Next morning, up early and ready to drive back to town for an engagement lunch – I was beginning to feel a little wobbly.

Three hours later I was only just able to make the restaurant.  I almost cried when it was suggested that we stroll along the river in the wonderful weather beforehand.  I just couldn’t manage it. but having to admit that to myself was the worst.   I never looked ill – indeed I’m not.  I  just have this wretched condition – and I still struggling to accept the way in can impact on my life

I don’t regard myself as old.  I might be 65, but having upbeat attitude usually helps me to feel as I always have… which is in my mid 40’s!

Fibromyalgia brings about no real understanding or compassion from the majority of people.

This flare up came like a bolt from the blue. Sudden and extreme exhaustion, muscle pain and a throbbing headache, all forcing me to accept the fact that ‘Fibro’  was going to alter my plans – was really was a massive slap in the face.


Fibromyalgia brings about no real understanding or compassion from the majority of people.  Difficult to diagnose – even doctors are thrown by the symptoms, which can leave sufferers feeling like frauds.  I’ve sometimes wished for some physical evidence to prove to  people I’m not just seeking pity and attention, and that I really am unable to just ‘ pull myself together’

Anyway as I’m now back on the sofa for the day I’ve had ample time to google away at my symptoms, and optimistically speaking, the advice of how to cope with them could be worse.

  • Do not expend all your energy in the morning or you’ll use it all up, so take it easy throughout the day.
  • No alcohol or caffeine after 2pm – which is really boring
  • Gentle aqua aerobics  – and on a bad day forget everything and go to bed.

This of course leaves me plenty of opportunity to continue on with the list, and next and really only available  option for me – a holiday!

So, gone are the ideas of cycling holidays, walking holidays, and rock climbing ( all such a relief ) and as for Everest – well that too sadly!

In are the ideas of cruising, or driving  …through France and into Switzerland I’ve decided.

Also, in – are lovely far flung beach holidays with a bit of gentle snorkelling and wonderful food, and plenty of wine – but only in the morning…and of course a trip to a Spa (in all seriousness massage really does help) if there’s not too much time available.

Despite my discomfort,  even I am cheered to read these words!  It confirms to me the fact that, yes – living with Fibro can be a real trial, but when you actually accept it,  and start working with it, it’s no longer as lonely and depressing as it was – and the more people that understand the condition…and the way it affects sufferers – means that it’ll be more accepted and treated accordingly.












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