Three Good Days Is All You Get

Three Good Days Is All You Get


This week, three decent days of pain management is all I got. My average pain is around a six to seven. The last three days have been around a four or five. Mostly a four. Of course nothing ever goes completely right. I have had huge bouts of chronic fatigue but the pain has been manageable.

I am frustrated. On the rare chance I get to a point where the pain is tolerable, I get greedy and I want several more days pain-free.

fibrochampionsblog_frustration_no_morethan3good_daysI am also frustrated because when I am having one of those rare episodes of good pain management I get nervous for fear that the pain will blow up, out of no where and it makes me leery as to what I try to do. I’ll take the pain-free days even though they wont last and even though I don’t always takes advantage of a pain free day.

They never include frustration as a symptom of fibromyalgia. But the frustration is as real as the pain itself.

Having said all that, I am grateful for three decently managed semi pain-0free days this past week.

The Most Popular Posts Of The Last Two Weeks At Fibro Champions Blog

The Most Popular Posts Of The Last Two Weeks At Fibro Champions Blog

What Does It Feel Like to Have Fibromyalgia




Starting a Weekly Support Group For Fibro, Chronic Fatigue, Lyme, Lupus and all chronic invisible illnesses.

14 Ways To Cope With Fibromyalgia, POTS, CFS And Other Chronic Illnesses

We Are Not Hypochondriacs . . . But Maybe We Should Be?

14 Ways To Cope With Fibromyalgia, POTS, CFS And Other Chronic Illnesses

14 Ways To Cope With Fibromyalgia, POTS, CFS And Other Chronic Illnesses


Let go of the guilt that comes from not being able to do what we once did. Having fibromyalgia or any chronic illness is not something we sought after. We didn’t ask for it. It just happened to us. For whatever reason we were imposed upon by this illness and its debilitating effects. It’s like being victimized. It’s something that happened to us through no fault of our own. We can’t be held responsible for having fibromyalgia, POTS, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or any number of the chronic invisible illnesses.

We need to stop feeling guilty and we need to stop feeling responsible for having this illness. We didn’t ask to have any of these chronic illnesses. So how do we move beyond the confinement that fibromyalgia imposes upon our life? Most people experience guilt because they are no longer doing what they used to do. The guilt comes from letting people down who continue to expect us to perform at the same level we did prior to fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue. We feel guilty for agreeing to do something for someone and then can’t live up to other peoples expectations of us. Living with fibro you know that symptoms can rise and fall on a daily basis. We have no control what this afternoon will bring or what tomorrow morning will bring.

We can wake up one morning feeling good and by the time we shave, shower and eat breakfast we begin to feel weak from the pain and exhausted for no good reason and can’t remember what you ate for breakfast. All our plans for the day are shot. That makes many people feel guilty and guilt causes stress and stress can easily contribute to feeling worse. Guilt has its place in life, but not for the way we are forced to live as fighters and survivors of fibromyalgia. If we commit a transgression we should feel guilt, but we do not need to feel guilty for letting people down because we are in too much pain to move about or we are too fatigued to get off the couch or out of the bed. For those kinds of things we do not need to feel guilty as it will only compound our pain, fatigue, fog or other symptoms. GET RID OF THE GUILT!


How do I give up my old life? First of all, you’re not giving up your whole past. You’re just giving up on what you can no longer do and you need to learn what you can do. There are a lot of things you can do to give you a sense of purpose and fulfillment.


Understand what you can and cannot do. Consider keeping a journal to learn how you deal with the circumstances of your life so you can learn and fine tune your new outlook on life. Maybe you can’t go hunting anymore, maybe you can’t move the refrigerator out to clean behind it anymore, maybe you can’t do all the housework and laundry and spend time with your kids like you used to.

14_ways to cope with firbo

So focus on what you can do. Forget the fridge because perhaps you can sweep the kitchen floor. Maybe parts of your house may need to be untidy, so you can spend time where it matters most, with your children or your spouse or friends. Remember, with fibromyalgia, your new reality is to reexamine your priorities because you can’t do it all.

Look at your life and tasks, and go into it like you are negotiating a special deal. I can’t do this . . . but I can do this . . .. I can’t sing in the church choir, but I can still go to church. This is the way you need to think. Don’t give up on life altogether. Just rearrange it. Compromise the events of the day.

Want to go out with the family to celebrate a special occasion? Take the day off from your typical modified chores and rest and sleep and relax. Conserve your energy so that you increase the chances of making it out of the house that evening and maybe even make it through the whole evening. As the saying goes, “you need to rob Peter to pay Paul.”


Now you see why letting go of the past limitations is important you can identify a new approach to living your life. Create new goals unfettered with past goals and achievements. Let your goals be based on what you can do with understanding your limitations. When setting goals, some people like to add to their goals step by step procedures for achieving goals. If you make your goals that way leave A LOT of room for each goal because you may have a day here or there that puts you in bed or on the couch in front of the TV or if you’re lucky a good book. There might be flare ups that last a week or a month. If you allow time in between your goals, then you won’t be as inclined to feel bad about not getting your goals done in a timely fashion.

You need to have flexibility built into your goals and then you need to reserve the right to modify them according to your ever changing circumstances. Always remember there is always room to grow even when the pain seems to be getting the better of you right now. That’s why goals are important, they keep you focused on what you can do.


Let’s look an example; You’ve wanted to read a certain book that is 1200 pages long but never had the time. You set a goal to read it. You give yourself six months to read it. But, as we all know, who suffer from fibro, things happen. Pain happens, fatigue happens. With fibromyalgia, a lot of things can happen that can take your eye of your goal.

You have written down the goal and it is where you will see it, so that it will remind you what you’re trying to do. You’re working on it diligently, but life happens, AKA, fibro happens and six months have come and gone and you’re only on page 578. “We have fibro we gotta stay flexible,” so you say to yourself, “if I didn’t have that goal or reading that book I may never have started. Now I am at page 578! Yey!” Now you exercise flexibility and say “in the next six months I will finish that book. The next half years comes and goes and it is a little better than the past six months and you’re able to finish the book. That’s what flexibility is all about when you make goals.


Communicate your issues and your desired changes with your family and close friends. Look at every important person in your life. Realistically look at them and determine what they’re capable of in supporting you. And then cut those expectations in half so that you won’t be disappointed in them.


Adjusting to your new environment doesn’t mean you are giving up on fibro. You still are seeking medical help in managing your illness and ease your pain and other symptoms.


There is room to grow in your new life.


Another thing about goals. Look at your old life and see what your goals were. Can they be modified and brought into your new life? If they can, then outline what needs to be done to achieve those goals and how they need to be modified. If they can’t be achieved then look back on your past and see if there are other interesting things that were put on the back in your old life and see if they can be brought back to life in your new life. If not, seek new goals based on your past experiences or new desires for achievement.


Keep an open mind. While there are definitely things you cannot do, there are things you can do. It’s kind of like growing up all over again. We need to stay open and positive and try new things to test our limitations. Sometimes keeping a journal will help keep track of these things.


Is fibromyalgia the end of life as we know it? Yes, it is. It is common sense to try and be as positive as we can be when dealing with a chronic illness such as fibromyalgia. I agree, we should be positive. I have had fibromyalgia for more than thirty-one years. When it comes to fibromyalgia I do not know it all, but I can speak with a degree of experience.

14_ways_to_cope_3Before we can improve our situation we need to come to terms with the idea that life as we knew it before fibromyalgia, is over. But that doesn’t mean our lives are over, only that our pre-fibro life is over. That’s not a negative thing to say, it’s a reality. If we can accept that reality, then we can move forward in our new life. A life filled with chronic pain, fatigue and fog. We can move forward in spite of the painful flu-like body aches and muscle spasms and bone crushing pain in our joints, lower back and hips.

We can go on to a somewhat fulfilling life in spite of the memory problems and other cognitive issues we call fibro fog. We can get some meaning out of life despite all the other symptoms of this dreaded disease. But first we need to understand the things we once did, will need to be eliminated or greatly modified. The expectations we once had, need to be adjusted to meet our current circumstances. Once we come to this settlement in our minds, we can do great things relative to our new pain filled life.

If you have fibromyalgia, then I know you feel the pain and frustration, but do you feel unfulfilled as well? Do you feel as though life is passing you by? Doesn’t it seem like all we do is try to make it through the next flare up? Are we so consumed with the pain, the fatigue, the fog and the malaise that we cannot seem to focus on anything else?


We need to manage our own expectations and we need to help others understand our limitations.

We cannot do what we once did. The pain is unrelenting and the fatigue is so overwhelming. There are so many symptoms that constantly get in our way. There is no way we can do what we used to do. We need to be realistic with our expectations. We can plan to do whatever we want, we have that right. But living up to it, that’s a whole different issue. We cannot control how fibromyalgia flares up or when.

A friend calls you up and wants to go see a movie tomorrow night. You say “great.” Tomorrow night comes and we get hit with a flare up. You call your friend and cancel your plans because the pain is unbearable. It feels like you have the flu and can hardly breath thru the pain. You ache all over. Do you feel guilty? You might, but you shouldn’t. Why should you or I feel guilty about the chronic, invisible illness we have? We didn’t ask for it. We didn’t choose it, it chose us.

It’s hard for us to plan in advance any kind of activity so we have to manage our expectations and the expectations of others.


When we talk about giving up the past, we’re talking about letting go of the past that motivates our actions today. We’re talking about the past where we worked fifty or sixty hours a week and still had time for activities with family and friends and have a full and fun filled weekend. We can hold ourselves to the old standard. We need to let go of it and accept our new standard and plan accordingly.

Since we can no longer hope to live like that again, why should we obsess over it and make ourselves feel guilty and stressed? We shouldn’t. We need to focus on a stress free life and obsessing over the past will do you no good. We need to let go of that type of our past while holding on tight to the memories of the past.


We need to learn what we are capable of now that fibro afflicts us on a daily basis, on an hourly basis or on a minute by minute basis. We need to understand that while there is still life left in us and we can still live a life worth living, we have limitations. Sure, we can break those limitations, but fibromyalgia shows no mercy, it has no grace, it demands consequences to our actions however unfair that may seem.

We need to understand that there are things we can do if we pace ourselves. What we might have accomplished in a day, back before fibro set in, may take a week to do now.

Maybe you can’t go hunting anymore, maybe you can’t move the refrigerator out to clean behind it anymore, maybe you can’t do all the housework and laundry and spend time with your kids like you used to. We need to understand that we can do some of those things with proper planning and with extra time figured into those activities.

So focus on what you can do. Instead of moving the refrigerator focus on the fact you can still sweep the kitchen floor once every few days. That’s better than nothing. Maybe you can’t go hunting anymore, but you could perhaps enjoy a mild walk on a simple nature trail.

Forget that fridge and prioritize. Perhaps it’s better to forget certain house cleaning chores so you have the energy to spend time with the kids.

7 Deadly Sins Of Fibromyalgia And Invisible Illnesses

Seven Deadly Sins Of Fibromyalgia

As most Christians know there are seven deadly sins that are the mother of all other sins. They are pride, envy, gluttony, lust, anger, greed and sloth. While they have their place in our personal spiritual and physical salvation, they also have their place in our life of chronic sickness. Understanding the seven deadly sins of incurable invisible illnesses help us to know how they apply to our chronic illnesses can help us live a better quality of life.

1. Pride: Is the excessive belief that one can deal with fibromyalgia alone, with help from no one else. All this will do leads to even more misery than fibromyalgia has already caused. Pride is the idea that we are better than anyone else and can do all things by ourselves. That sounds ludicrous to the ear, there are those in all walks of life that suffer from pride, the original sin. Pride prevents us from receiving Heavenly help in our painful path of fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome and all other types of invisible illnesses. We need to let the medical professionals into our journey as well as quality advice and support from those who are going through what you are going through.

2. Envy: Envy is the desire to have for ourselves that which belongs to other people. As we communicate with the community of invisible illnesses we come across people who have been through what we are going through and they are having more success than we are in managing their illness. They have a better, kinder doctor than we do. We need to find joy in our hearts for them and not envy them for their good fortune.

7 deadly sins

3. Gluttony: Is an inordinate desire to consume more than which is healthy for our chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic pain or other invisible illness. If one pain pill takes the edge off the pain, then why not take one more to fully take away the pain. If exercise relieves stiffness and helps a little with pain management and helps with keeping our sedentary heart a little more healthy then if a little is good, a lot more is much better, right? Wrong. Overdoing medicine, exercise or any other type of therapy can do more harm than good.

4. Lust: In the case of chronic invisible illnesses like fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue and POTS lust is an inordinate craving for wanting what we can or shouldn’t have or an inordinate craving for what we shouldn’t do. Part of the way to get rid of that lust is to focus on what we can do without exacerbating our current condition. This is tough because what we want to do is to be normal. Is there anything wrong with that? Not for people with invisible Illnesses, but for us with fibromyalgia it will just make our symptoms worse.

5. Anger: I am not speaking for everyone, then again maybe I am. I find anger one of the worsts of these seven deadly sins. I want to be able to run like I did more than thirty years ago. I want to ski the best snow on earth in the mountains of Utah. I want to wake up at five in the morning and go fishing. I want to get on the floor and play with my dog. I want to, I want to, I want to . . . and the list goes on and on and on. Not being able to do these things makes me angry. But what I need to do is be grateful for what I can do and love what I can love, most especially I can love my wife and children all the more for the support they give me. I need to fight anger with humility, gratitude and love.

7 deadly sins_invisible_illnesses6. Greed: To be greedy is to want more than Heavenly Father is ready to bless us with. He is teaching us lessons with his blessings. We need to be patient. We need to accept that assertion and we need to always keep God in our lives and be grateful to Him for all that we do have. We fight greed by being grateful for what we do have. Maybe we have POTS or Fibro but we don’t have all the symptoms. Perhaps we can do things that we shouldn’t be able to do because of the blessings from God.

7. Sloth: Is avoiding physical or spiritual work to manage our various chronic invisible illnesses. What I am going to say may not sit well with many victims of invisible illnesses like POTS, Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Chronic pain and other invisible illnesses. In spite the extreme chronic pain, fatigue or other debilitating symptoms we need to work on coping and dealing with the symptoms. Many of these symptoms are manageable. Some symptoms can be managed to the point of going into remission. But we need to do the work, even if that work is simply praying and going to doctors appointments and taking our medications as prescribed.

These seven deadly sins of incurable invisible illnesses are very important to consider if we want to have some control over the quality of our life with these protracted illnesses. There are countless medical things we can do and there are unlimited things we can do outside of medicine to fight the good fight for some degree of peace and wellness in the midst of our journey with chronic illnesses. We need to be aware of the seven deadly sins that get in our way of peace, hope and joy.

Troy Wagstaff ©

19 Ways The Smart Phone Can Help With Fibro, CFS And Other Invisible Illnesses

19 Ways The Smart Phone Can Help With Fibro, CFS And Other Invisible Illnesses

Twenty-five ways the smart phone can help manage Fibro fog, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, fibromyalgia, Chronic pain and all other invisible illness.

The 24 ways your smart phone can help with fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, and all the other invisible illnesses. A while back, I wrote a post for the Fibro Champions Blog that was entitled 22 Items For Your Fibro Emergency Go Bag. The article applies to CFS and all other chronic illnesses of invisible illnesses.

These twenty-four ways a smart phone can help with your chronic illnesses may depend on what type of smart phone you have. I have an Apple iPhone. But I assume the competitive nature of the smart phones would provide many of the same default apps and many of the same downloaded apps.

We will review the fifteen default apps that can help with chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia and invisible illnesses. We will save the seven downloadable apps for a separate article after the Fibro Journey Book is published in about a month or so. I am very busy putting the final touches on the book so I can’t write as much or as often while finishing the book.


The apps that come with a smart phone eliminate nine items on the list, almost half. 22 Items For Your Fibro Emergency Go-bag.

1. Extra Cell Phone Battery. 2. Cell Phone Charger. 3. Two days’ worth of all your MEDs. 4. Earphones for your cell phone. 5. Book(s) to read. 6. A notepad. 7. Pen or pencil. 8. MEDs. List. 9. Medical History. 10. Scriptures. 11. Food, at least enough to take your MEDs. Protein bars or energy bars. 12. Bottled water. 13. Cards, or some other small game. 14. Emergency money other than what you have in your wallet. 15. Small comfy pillow. 16. A small blanket. 17. Pair of comfy socks. 18. Tens Unit. 19. Heating Pad. 20. Reading Glasses. 21. Personal female items. 22. A few DVDs

Let me tell you how I got the idea. I was telling one of my daughters who says yes to our request to work around the house but forgets to do her chores. I said when you say yes to do a chore set an alarm for when you will be ready to do the chore and you’ll remember to do it.

As I told her that, the idea came to me that I do well in writing down “to do list” but forget to look at the lists due to my short term memory issues from fibro fog. So I thought I would do the same, put my to do list on my smart phone alarm. Then I started to think of all the other ways a smart phone could help me manage my disease.

Using a smart phone makes items number one, two and four all the more important in your go bag with the heavy reliance on your smart phone. After all, if you don’t keep your phone charged it won’t be very helpful.

On my smart phone I have the following default apps on my iPhone:

1. Calendar: Using the smart phone calendar is particularly good because it will provide reminders of the appointments the day before with a beep or custom tone.

2. Camera: Can be used for note taking. For instance, if you need to take notes from a medical document, take a picture and save your hands from getting tired. Also, you can take pictures of your pill bottles so you will always know what pills you are taking. This is important because most doctors’ office want to know what your current MEDs are. There are also other obvious reasons for a camera.

3. Clock: Keeping track of time is easy with a smart phone, especially for those who don’t like to wear watches.

4. Maps: The Google maps app and other map apps will give you driving instructions to get where you need to go. When you’re going to many new doctors this can be helpful.

5. Notes: The notes app eliminates three items from Go Bag mentioned in a previous post. It gets rid or a pen, pencil and note pad.

6. Safari: Helps you access the Internet

7. Telephone: Don’t forget that will all the bells and whistles of a smart phone, a smart phone is primarily a telephone allowing you easy communication where ever you are.

8. Voice Memos: If typing in the Notes app is too tedious for your painful fingers, then using the Voice Memo app. It’s a good way to take notes when you’re in a doctor’s office, ER or some other place where note taking may be beneficial..

9. Weather: The weather app tells you the weather for the day and the upcoming week. Having Weather knowledge is important to plan our upcoming days.

10. Speaker Phone: The speaker phone allows more than one person to be in on the conversation.

11. Texting: Many smart phone plans allow unlimited texting which is a good way to communicate. Testing is a good way to communicate should you find yourself in a place the requires quiet. With texting, you can always communicate.

12. Recents: On the iPhone is a list of all your recent incoming and outgoing phone calls. If someone calls you while you’re driving or otherwise unable to answer the phone you can call them back if you recognize the phone number.

13. Favorite and commonly used phone numbers: For any doctor, health care provider, hospital in your area, program in the phone number so you’ll recognize who is calling you. And on the favorite list of phone numbers, reserve this for the most frequently called numbers.

14. Alarm: The Alarm feature may be one of the best features for those with fibro fog. Besides the calendar that will remind you a day before of your appointments, the Alarm can be set for appointments that come up that day or that will be coming up in the future. It will sound an alarm and remind you of pending appointments. This is my new best friend. I am very good at making to do lists, but I forget to look at them. This feature will do away with that problem.

15. Timer: The timer is awesome for me when I put something in the oven and then go to my den. I can’t hear the oven alarm so I set my timer to coincide with the oven timer. When it goes off, then I go down to the oven.

16. Games: Games are a good way to get your mind off of things. Every phone that I know of comes with several default games. However, there are countless games that can be downloaded for free to add to your list on your phone.

17. Voice Activated – Siri: For the Apple IPhone Siri is the name of voice activation and hands off using many features of your phone. This is a good safety feature.

18. Hands free, Blue tooth: A blue tooth feature is usually an add-on purchase but it gives you more hands free ability to talk on your phone while safely driving.

19. Calculator: The Calculator is a great app for figuring out many simple math questions.

There are thousands of free download apps to add to your iPhone giving you more features to deal with in managing your chronic invisible illnesses. Smart phone users have access to download thousands of additional apps for free thousands more for a small charge. In the next installment of this article we will talk about at least thirteen downloadable apps that we will go into after I am finished with my fibro book in about a month or less.

Helpful Downloadable Apps


Flash Light


Google Search

Health App


Reader Apps



Google Pay or other payment apps.



Read bar codes

Living Free In The Face Of Fibromyalgia, CFS, Or Anyother Invisible Illness

Living Free In The Face Of Fibromyalgia, CFS, Or Anyother Invisible Illness

Anyone who suffers from an invisible illness is tempted to give up or surrender to the frustrating trial of their illness, this quote is dedicated to them.


Living Free In The Face Of Adversity

When faced with adversity you have two choices, you can give into to the adversity and be it’s victim or you can fight back with the spirit of the warrior and live or die trying. Which would you rather do suffer as a victim or live freely, fighting while suffering and living your life in spite of the trials. Troy Wagstaff ©

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