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The Benefits of Having Fibromyalgia

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Everyone talks about the problems of having a chronic illness like fibromyalgia, but there are certainly enough benefits to compensate for the inconvenience of having all the symptoms fibromyalgia offers. I’d like to share with you some of the benefits I have personally experienced.

I can predict the weather.

I don’t have a formal education in meteorology, but my accuracy in predicting precipitation, be it rain or snow, is startling! My pain level usually increases well before anything falls from the skies. Sometimes it takes some time before I realize why I can hardly move, but eventually I can announce (with remarkable precision) that there will be rain today!

Sleeping six to eight hours a night is overrated.

Four hours of fitful sleep is usually all I get. In fact, I’m writing this and it’s only 4 a.m. Because of my inability to sleep, there are many things I’m able to accomplish. I can carefully walk down the stairs in a way that doesn’t wake anyone in the house, holding tight to the railing so I don’t fall from exhaustion. I can learn useful tidbits of information on television (did you know you can buy a complete set of knives for only $29.99 plus shipping and handling?). As a bonus, while everyone else is busy with their daily lives, I can take a well-deserved nap for an hour or two. Or three. And, before I know it, it’s time to start the whole thing all over again!

Disability parking permits are a bonus.

They allow me to not only park close to stores, but they give me a chance to have interesting conversations with strangers. I’ve had people stop me and tell me it’s illegal to use someone else’s placard, that it’s unfair for me to take a spot that someone else could use and, my personal favorite, they tell me I don’t need a disability placard because I look “normal!” Sometimes I only get stares and dirty looks and never get the chance to justify myself or listen to their opinions. I have to shrug my shoulders and wait for the next opportunity to chat.

If you have fibromyalgia, you’re well aware that these are just a few of the benefits. I‘m sure your list may even be longer than mine.

I challenge you to take the time to look for the silver lining in all those dark clouds that may appear. And do it for yourself, even when you know it’s going to rain!

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Photo via EkaterinaVassilieva on Getty Images

Originally published: January 11, 2018
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