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    feeling ashamed
    vicki68 posted:
    Hi everyone, I hope your Easter was wonderful. I've watched this community for a while, but have never engaged. I've tried everything to ease the pain, and have never stopped working until now. I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder 13 years ago, and fibro about 5 years ago. I went from a high stress job to a low stress job, and I've found that I just can't do it anymore. My pain is intense most of the time, and I'm so tired. I've decided to pursue disability and am feeling extremely guilty that my partner will have to bring in all the income. I'm also afraid of "not working" I know that it's beneficial, especially to the brain. I just needed to say it out loud.
    dollbug responded:
    Hello vicki and welcome....MiMi in NC....I am sorry that you are not feeling better. I think we all have been there done that though. I hope that soon you will find the *right combination of tools* which will help you lower your pain. I wish I could say that I have a good idea what might help the fatigue....but to be honest I have not found anything at all which has helped mine....but I am still looking. I am one of the FMers here though who has learned how to *control my FM pain by taking vitamins and supplements and doing other things as well* am not completely painfree, nor do I expect to be...but I have learned how to at least cope better.

    I hope you will be approved for disability....but you will more than likely be denied....that's ok though as most people are. The system is so badly broken and it seems like the government does NOT want those who can no longer work be allowed to get approved for the benefits that they have paid into either. So don't worry...just be sure and follow the process of what your denial letter states and appeal the decision. I think it explains it well enough for you to do this yourself. I know that I never used an attorney when I applied and got denied. It is just important to meet all of the deadlines.

    I hope you will check out the info here under *tips* and *resources* I am sure you will find some good tools that perhaps you have not thought of trying.

    I would also encourage you to be sure and ask your doctor to check your Vitamin D level....which is important to a lot of people these days.

    Take care and good luck.


    My personal exchanges are Vitamin D and Pain and Wrath of the Dragon....if you care to visit..
    BetteK responded:

    15 years ago I had to stop doing a job I had loved beyond belief. I had to accept the fact that I could not depend on my body to get up, drive an hour each way, teach for 8 hours, and come home to my duties as a wife and mother.

    At that time, I was our principle breadwinner. Luckily, I was able to get on NY state's teacher's disability because I was vested. Social Security Disability was a different story. They turned me down. I found a lawyer and appealled. It took two years, but I got my money. (Lawyers only get paid if you win. They get 30% --maybe 25% now--of your back payments when you finally get approved and none of future payments.)

    We managed with less money. My husband and sons did a little to help in the house. I lowered my expectations for household cleanliness. If I cook a big meal on Sunday, my husband is there to mash the potatoes and cut the meat while I'm making gravy and nuking vegetables. That meal will provide leftovers for 2 to 3 other dinners during the week. I also use my crockpot (with those new Reynolds liners to eliminate cleanup) and let hubby do the gardening--except for the salad greens I truly love and which I can still manage.

    In short, life still went on. The bank did not take the farm. Life is simpler. I am 69 now, and the arthritis that started my FM 41 years ago is more widespread. Back then, I was told my back was 30 years older than I was; now, the rest of me has caught up.

    Your fibro is manageable. Your fatigue is too. There will be some bad days, but you will also have many more good ones.

    Be sure to get a walk in every nice day. Enjoy your new rural life.

    Check out assistive devices. Change doorknobs to levers. Find gadgets to help opening bottles and jars. Choose a lightweight stick vac that is easy to play with--if you cannot con SOMEBODY else into vacuuming for you. There are blocks that can fit under your bed's legs and raise it up higher; this makes a big difference in bedmaking.

    And don't be afraid to post here. This is a place where we all are in the same boat. We are here for help. We are here to help.

    Towards better days,

    vicki68 replied to BetteK's response:
    Thanks so much for you kind words. I know it will be difficult to get any benefits, but at this point I feel I have to try. I have days that aren't awful, but so many days that are. I lost my job because I missed too many days, and I can't think of another job that would be less stressful and for which I am trained. I do things to help myself, i.e., eating healthier, exercising as much as I can, etc.. I know I need to get back on my vitamin D.. my numbers are extremely low, but without health benefits, it's difficult to even get the blood work completed. I want to work, but between the mental health issues and the fibro, I just don't think I can do it. I'm happy to be here though, and I plan on paying attention to what this site has to offer... especially the folks who know what I'm going through.

    BetteK replied to vicki68's response:
    Vicki, if you go before a judge for your hearing, bring along all your meds. Bring the ones you are on now. Remember all those meds you knew you should throw away but couldn't quite make yourself--after all, you might need those two percocet pills in the bottle of the vial some day. Bring them along too. Toss any over the counter pills you may have taken for any and all of FM's many manifestations.

    I did that. My judge took the bottles and vials out, checked them for my name, noted some of the dates, and said sternly,
    "It is obvious that we are talking about severe and debilitating pain that has gone on for many years. It is inconcievable that this claim was denied originally." Hey, it had been about 25 years at that point. Of course, the lady judge had seen me dash into the restroom at least 6 times in the wait before the session began. I don't think the irritable bladder hurt that day,
    although it did make for miserable working conditions.

    Stay with us, feel free to vent if necessary, try some of the tips we all offer, and add your own ways to lighten our load.

    Towards better days,


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