chronic pain/fibromyalgia · New York · pesach

Sleep Deprived

I am many things but I am not sleep deprived. Ever since leaving behind the rat race (teaching at a New York City public school in my case), I have been catching up on much needed sleep. Now I get oodles of it, hours of it and when I’m lucky, a handful of it is good “restorative” sleep.
I never slept as a child. When I wasn’t reading into the wee hours of the night, my mother was watching TV in my bed or depositing one of my baby sisters in my lap to watch at…3am. Bad habits die hard and by the time I was teaching full-time, I was sleeping about four hours a night. Really, it’s no surprise that fibromyalgia caught up with me before sleep did.

What I’ve since learned about living with fibromyalgia is that the pain is much worst when I’m under slept. But of course, as many pain sufferers will tell you, sleeping through the pain is sometimes impossible. There are a lot of expletives, I would like to use about my experience this Passover but nothing pissed me off more than all the constant comments about my health and my sleeping habits. (Okay, the jokes about stealing my pain killers were amusing and I still think drug dealing is a serious offense).

But here’s a little advice. Take it or leave it. If you’re not a doctor (or actually suffering from what I’ve got), SHUT UP. Please don’t bore me (or any of your poor suffering friends) with all the details of all the supplements, organic foods and crazy experiments you think will cure my fibromyalgia. It’s not helpful. And if my twelve hours of sleep are pissing you off, maybe it’s because you’re jealous and cranky and could use some yourself.

Gee whiz, does anyone survive Passover without anger management problems?

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