Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Talk about a different viewpoint

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I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia this past spring. At the time, I didn't realise just how much it would affect my life. I had put on blinders so to speak and just did my best to forget and ignore it. 

A few weeks ago, it decided to remind me in a rather painful way that it was there . As the days went by, the pain grew and I could do less and less until I couldn't even walk a block without being rooted to the ground by pain and spasms. As it worsened, I turned to forums and websites on fibromyalgia and found so much information, some good, some bad, some downright frightening, that only made things worse. I finally booked an appointment with my neurologist who actually could fit me in the very next day as another patient had cancelled. After going over the symptoms, pain, cotton ball head, spasms, etc... we had a long chat and he answered my questions truthfully and with no added sugar coating. At the end of a 2 hour appointment I felt better, understood a lot more the process of fibromyalgia and what outside influences will make it worse. He also adjusted my medication and told me that I should begin to feel better shortly and he was right.

Today, I'm going through the mail at work (replacing receptionist for just this week) and came across a magazine called Abilities On the cover was a photo of Stephen Hawking. For those of you who do not know him, he has done mountains of research in the fields of cosmology, quantum gravity and especially black holes. You would think that it sounds pretty normal but now add the fact that this man has not spoken a word since 1985, is paralysed and depends on others to feed him, etc... and now you get a much different picture. Mr Hawking suffers from ALS but much to his credit he has not let this fact slow him down in the least. 

In the following article from which I've excerpted a rather significant viewpoint, it really puts my fibro in a different light and made me realise that despite ALS;  he can work, play, enjoy life, etc... why should I let fibro stop me from enjoying the things I like to do. Certainly it will take adjustments, but it doesn't mean that life as I know it is over for me. It's all in the perspective, the viewpoint and not the point of view.
"I have had motor neurone disease for practically all my adult life. Yet it has not prevented me from having a very attractive family and being successful in my work. This is thanks to the help I have received from Jane, my children, and a large number of other people and organizations. I have been lucky, that my condition has progressed more slowly than is often the case. But it shows that one need not lose hope." Excerpt from Stephen Hawking: In His Own Words, 
On Disability.
And to show just how much freedom he has, in 2007 on one of his trips to North America,  he flew in the zero-G aircraft and experienced weightlessness for the first time in his life.

Dr. Hawking enjoying weightlessness for the first time
On a side note, go to his website and take a look around. I didn't realise until today that he has written children's books with the help of his daughter. I wish my children were still young enough to enjoy being read to from these books. They explain space and what's up there in a way that children will understand quite clearly. It's an amazing way to develop a love of science in children.

He has also been a presenter on His viewpoint on the universe is fascinating and brings up many questions. Well worth watching.

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