Friday, April 27, 2012

Why Are You Complaining?

Last night I laid in bed bitching to my husband incessantly about how horrible I felt. It rained and wow did that do a number on me. "Oh my God my head is splitting. My sinuses are engorged and I feel like my face is weeping. My eyes don't look like a character from Japanese anime, do they? Man they sure feel like it. It's like my lower lashes are hitting the bottom of my cheekbones! My sacroiliac is frozen and killing me and the pinched nerve in my neck is shooting pain down my arm in pulsing waves," I finished, feeling I had appropriately briefed him on the many points of misery I currently suffered from. It was not the first time this evening I had done this.

But then I heard myself. It was like I floated up to my bedroom ceiling and looked down on the dynamic unfolding in complete objectivity. "You must get so sick and tired of hearing me complain!" I exclaimed with enthusiasm. "That is all I do. How can you stand it? How can you even be around me," I asked him, disgust rolling off my tongue. "Well that is not all you do," he said with a tease. "It used to be a lot worse." But I had opened my mind up to his perspective and needed to sit in it a little while before I could imagine what I would do if the tables were turned. What if he complained to me as much as I complain to him? What if he was always sick, an emotional roller coaster and when I came home each day never knew what person was going to greet me at the door, or if they were even out of bed? I can barely stand it when he comes home in a bad mood, for I want to fix whatever ails him at any cost.

After examining this I concluded it is the need to be understood that causes my incessant ravings about painful symptoms. I don't complain nearly as much to my friends with Fibromyalgia because they already know when I utter the phrases, "Can't sleep" "Headache" or "Rain," exactly what I am going through. And one would think by now my husband would know, too. Which he does. So what exactly is my bleating all about, then? During deep reflection while I played that stupid cell phone bubble game I discovered two causes. One is a constant need to remind those who are not physically suffering with me that although I look fine and dandy, I am oh so not. And the other is guilt. Argh! Still that damn guilt. Because my health problems have ruined every plan we dreamed of or expectation we had and I feel terrible about it. I am still bearing the burden, even though I know I am not to blame, I still somehow am. But I declare enough already! I gotta move past this phase, this need for approval and acceptance I am so desperately seeking as a way to assuage my own conscience. I want to improve my circumstances, not stay stuck in them! Life is what it is. Que sera sera, whatever will be will be. It comes with no guarantees. We do the best with what we are given, that is all one can do. And really didn't Al Pacino say it best in The Devil's Advocate while speaking to Keanu Reeves? "Guilt is like a bag of bricks. All you gotta do is set it down."

Thanks for joining,


  1. This is exactly me. I don't tell most people so I imagine they think I'm just anti-social. My daughter finally asked me to stop talking about it. I was trying to tell her about the REAL me she never knew. It was just upsetting her and making her sad. She didn't understand why I could be in pain and happy. I explained the many things that make me happy. That helped her so much. Thanks for sharing. Haven

  2. Haven, that really hit a nerve for me. I was telling one of my sons the other day things that I used to do before I got sick, and he said "oh, I thought you were always like this". I guess it didnt ever hit me that they only me as I am now. It makes me sad to think that they will never know the "real" me, either.

  3. I think it is a stage we go through. There was a time I was much more vocal about how I was feeling (or hurting). I have a wonderful group of friend of whom most had fibro, but all are dealing with health challenges. It is so wonderful and comfortable to be with them as we can say how we're feeling, and everyone does understand, and then we go on with life. When we go out with each other there is never a feeling of slowing people down, or tiring out too soon as we're all in the same situation. It is such a joy.

    I do hope you can soon find the right treatment for you that will help you get to a managing stage versus the pain 99% of the time stage. I have been able to manage mine quite well for the last 12 years, staying mostly in lilac. Before that I was amethyst all the way.

    How about creating some new dreams? When one door closes another opens. For me, God opened some great doors for me, bringing new friends into my life and new opportunities that I would otherwise never have had. We can and need to grieve our losses, then look forward to new and wonderful things that are out there for us.