It seems that I forget more and more every day; from doctor’s appointments to family birthdays, or if I paid a bill or not. The information has simply disappeared from my mind.
Thanks to fibromyalgia, I am often challenged by even the simplest tasks and I feel that my memory is so bad that I cannot trust myself to remember daily responsibilities.
People realize when I can’t find my child’s teacher’s name or remember my PIN number at the supermarket exit. I am losing a little of me every day. This person that I am now, well, she is what I have left and it is impossible to hide her deficits.
Once I was very organized with a sharp and precise memory. I didn’t need post-its, or lists, or any reminders. I worked as a newspaper editor and reporter and didn’t forget anything. I could tell you the story behind the full story with names, dates and phone numbers of the parties involved. I knew everyone in the community I served and, if I ran into someone at random, I knew his name and why I knew it instantly.
Then I had a baby, my fibro became inflamed and I began to experience the effects of fibromyalgia in a completely new way.
The fog began slowly. I missed an appointment here and there and completely forgot someone’s name. I attribute it to fatigue, stress and even aging. But the fog progressed. I began to forget how to spell certain words. I would like people to greet me as if we were very well acquainted and had no idea who they were. I began to be afraid that something else was happening and that my memory was momentarily delayed.
My doctor explained that brain fog can occur with fibromyalgia, but it is usually mild and not progressive.
Well, I’m here to say that I don’t think it’s smooth. The word fog seems so peaceful and harmless. But while I’m at it, I feel lost, confused and scared.
My life has changed because of fibro fog. I have to check my calendar several times a day and I am always worried about what I have missed, because I have generally forgotten something.
Fibromyalgia has even stolen my ability to articulate my thoughts at times. I know what I mean, but the words come out confusing and awkward.
I’ve had terrifying moments of uncertainty about how to unfasten my seat belt or how to turn on my car’s windshield wipers. I lost myself momentarily while driving because nothing seemed familiar.
I know that I am not alone in these moments of panic when it seems that I have suffered some important form of memory loss.
The good news is that this fog is not present all the time, it rises and confusion passes and my memory is flooded like a breath of fresh air. I am grateful for the respite because it shows me that my brain is still working and that it is really only the fibro mist that causes my difficulties.
Living with fibromyalgia is much more than the fight against fatigue and pain. It brings many hidden challenges that include brain fog and memory problems in our lives.
Talk to your doctor about the problem to rule out anything else, but know that this is common and that you are not alone.