Even though I have been having symptoms for over a year, I have just been diagnosed with FM. my husband took me shopping the other day and I was overwhelmed over just two stops but I was determined to finish my errands. We pulled into a parking lot and it was very busy. I jokingly said to him that I should get a handicapped tag. He laughed and said no way but when you feel like you can’t even walk 50 feet to go into a store, what do you do?

I have been wrestling with the changes in my life and with the fact that I now have a diagnosis. Before that, I kept thinking that the neuro doc would have an answer and give me a cure, then the internist, then the rheumy… Well, no cure is coming. In some ways, the diagnosis was a relief because it put a name to all the symptoms and weirdness going on and it helped me to accept that something was truly wrong and forced me to actually confront it head on.

Being handicapped, to me, means that you can not function as a “normal” person does so I guess that means that I am handicapped. However, It is a label that I don’t want! But do labels define us? Sometimes, I think we let them define us. I know I do. I do have limitations and I have to admit that. And what is wrong with availing ourselves of the assistance that many people with other handicaps or disabilities get? After all, may of us have worked hard all our lives and have helped others. As I have read many other places, it is time to concentrate on me for a while. Easy concept, but very difficult to put into practice.

In the end, it all boils down to one thing- I am still and will always be the awesome MB no matter what label anyone, including me, puts on me.