24 Oct 2012

Time for a Medical !

As part of applying for Employment Support Allowance (ESA) Benefits you have to jump through so many hoops to prove you're eligible (thank you to all the frauds for all this stress!)

After filling out a 55 page form about my illness, living conditions and work life, and then another 20 page form about what I can and can't physically do , it was time for the next step.... a physical face to face Medical assessment!

After tearing myself apart with stress I went to my appointment yesterday (23rd Oct) at Northampton Medical assessment centre. Once I got there they told me that they were short staff due to sickness so I may not get seen that day but I waited around and luckily after a 35 minute wait I was seen by a nurse.

I have heard so many bad things about these assessments, the intimidating questions, the insensitive nurse's and being treated with no respect. I don't know if I was just lucky or because I live in a smaller town the centre was run differently to how city centres are ran.

The Nurse I saw (can not remember her name), was  a middle ages woman, she listened to me and had an understanding of Fibromyalgia. She let me take my time to answer. She had my previous forms there for her to consult with. I was taken back by how positive the assessment. Luckily too I had my dad with me to prompt me of answers I forgot or things I missed out.  At the end of all the questions she told me that there was a physical assessment too, but she didn't want me to do it as she could see I was in pain and didn't want me to hurt myself.

Overall it was a more positive experience than I expected, though I am aware that not all assessments may go like that and also I am not getting my hopes up for getting into the working group of the Benefits system as I know how tough a system it is to score points and jump through the right hoops.

I would love to hear of anyone else's experience of these medicals?

Take care
Jayne xx

19 Oct 2012

Braving the outside world


So this is a post that people may be able to relate too. It is all to do about how having Fibromyalgia makes you feel isolated, and also afraid to face the world.

Since I got diagnosed in February this year, and was told that I could not work any longer, I lost my idependence I wouldn't leave the house alone. This is mainly to do with parents being protective for my health. It wasn't until anout August I realised I hadn't been out on my own for over 6months. I hadn't even realised that I had been living in a bubble.
 So in August I decided to go out, only a 20minute walk to the post office and back. Sounds easy enough, but I was petrified. What if something happened? What if someone asked me about my cane? What if I can't  do it? So many 'What if's?' for such an every day task, but it was then that I realised how I had  gained a fear of leaving my house, my safe place.

I did it though, I went for that walk, I made sure I was comfortable. I made sure I had my phone incase I needed help, I had my cane to help me feel steady and I did it!

So other the next few months I dug myself back into my house, my safe place until this week!
I have now received my disabled persons bus pass , which mean I can go anywhere on the bus for free. Which is a fantastic thing to have for days when I feel rough I don't have to walk places, and it opens up a whole new load of job's I can apply for and not worry about travel costs.

 This week I have been on the bus 3 times which felt good, I feel like I getting my independence back.

Yesterday I walked from my boyfriends into town, went into shops, brought things, dealt with the awkwardness of trying to carry things and do things with one hand, and most of all,  It felt good. I was happy to be out the house and doing things on my own without having someone worry about me.

I was so happy with myself that I even took a photo of myself!

15 Oct 2012

How my cane gave me my life back.

I remember how I felt when I first bought and received my cane back in February 2012, I have Fibromyalgia. I was embarrassed and scared to use it in public, I mean I was a 19 year old, a few months before I had been working with young children and constantly active. It was impossible to come to terms with having a walking stick. But now only 6 months later I am so comfortable (most the time) with my Gregory (named my stick after House md). The looks I get some time are hard to shake off but my cane has given me my life back, it allows me to walk and be able to do everything with other people. It has opened up my life and keeps me as active as I can be.

I am proud of my Cane and it is a wonderful at helping me carry on my life.

just to add each photo is at a certain point in my life that my Cane allowed me to do, Wembley I would have not been able to go to London and see Frank Turner play such an amazing gig, and meet such amazing people. Then the bottom ones are they day after Wembley when I went to London Zoo and got to see my adopted Hippo. Then my brother Graduation, a long day but I couldn't have done it without the cane, and I am stupidly proud of my brother. And the final one is only last weekend when Ben took me away for the weekend, a beautiful weekend at the Lake District, a lot of walking but again my cane allowed me to to it all and I enjoyed myself so much in all these photo’s.

There are still day's when I wake up and think 'why me?' as I reach for my cane to walk me to the local shops. I have learnt when people stare at you cause you're so young , just smile at them. Show people that even with such an illness and needing a cane you can still enjoy and be happy with your life.

12 Oct 2012

Right this is my first attempt of running a blog that isn't just random pictures and statements.
I have written about my Fibromyalgia story and when I got diagnosed , here

I am going to use this blog to update on my ways of trying to survive with Fibro, to share links and books and things to cheer up the hard days. I am hoping by doing this I am going to raise awareness.

Although the first few posts/pages will be poor quality I feel as I am no computer genius and this site is all new to me, and a bit daunting.

Thank you
Take care all
 Jayne xx