I was in my first term at university. A couple of months later, I was bed-bound because of the debilitating pain.
After I received my Fibromyalgia diagnosis at the age of 18, I couldn’t properly comprehend how it would impact me for the rest of my life.
I not only struggled with the constant pain but also with the dramatic change in my lifestyle.
I was unable to do the simplest of tasks like washing my hair and filling up my car with petrol.
‘I dropped out of university’
I gave up studying while I was visiting specialists, on a weekly basis, to try to get some answers.
I felt isolated, as no one could understand how it really felt to live in pain every day.
Despite looking like a typical student, it was really a very different story.
Fibromyalgia was once for me, as it still is for many, a completely grey area in terms of medical conditions.
An invisible illness
There is such a lack of understanding for the condition because it is an invisible illness.
I think the most frustrating aspect is the fact that some specialists did not fully understand it themselves.
One even told me that I should just continue with my life as normal and try to remain positive. This seemed impossible to me because the pain was too overwhelming. However, the majority of the doctors I have met over my journey have been incredible.
Lady Gaga has reassured me
Once I met doctors who actually listened and could begin to understand how I felt, I was overcome with a huge sense of relief and I remember thinking, “wow, I am not crazy, there is actually an explanation”.
Fast forward four years, I am now 22 and I have learned how to manage the pain so I can continue to live my life to the best possible degree.
However, knowing that someone like Lady Gaga is a fellow sufferer is reassuring.
I hope it will bring awareness and understanding tor other fibromyalgia sufferers, who must live their life with an invisible illness.