It’s been a while since I talked about my own fibromyalgia story. Especially about recovery. I’ve blogged, written books, and led workshops for more than 20 years. Therefore, my chronic illness healing story is old news to me. But for some of you, it may be new. Whether new or a refresher, here’s a short version of the path I took from chronic illness to chronic wellness.
First, an Introduction
My name is Sue Ingebretson. I’m an author, speaker, blogger, Fibromyalgia Recovery Coach, and a living example of what chronic illness recovery can look like. You may know me from my blog, RebuildingWellness, or my books – FibroWHYalgia, Get Back into Whack (and the Get Back into Whack Workbook), and Chronic Coloring.
You also may know me from my social media posts on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, or LinkedIn.
But way back when, before anyone knew me in the fibro world, I was sick – very sick. Then I got well. My healing journey certainly wasn’t simple. But it actually wasn’t all that complicated either.
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Let me explain. I’m stubborn and tenacious. When my health was spiraling out of control in the early 2000s, I wanted to know WHY. My doctors told me that I had to accept that I’d soon be disabled. I needed the assistance of a cane to walk and was told that a scooter chair was next. I researched anything I could find on healing from chronic illness. Back then, resources were scarce. I discovered that there were no examples of healing from what doctors were telling me to do – take medications, try physical therapy, etc. I read a lot about “managing” my symptoms, but why couldn’t I find information on eliminating them?
Thinking outside the box became my new passion.
The earliest healing story I found was about a woman who reversed her rheumatoid arthritis symptoms by changing her diet. I was fascinated by this seemingly far-fetched idea. Although I knew less than NOTHING about nutrition, I wanted to learn more.
I studied healing information on nutrition, body movement/exercise, detoxification, and stress management. I uncovered more and more stories that fed my passion. Even though I thought a lot of what I was reading seemed nutty, I thought, “What do I have to lose?” I dug into more research, discovering new treatments and protocols. I experimented on myself constantly. I was shocked to experience some improvements right away. Others took longer. But eventually, I saw dramatic results from the changes I made.
I couldn’t deny it. I was healing from the inside out.
I began with nutrition and found that I had food sensitivities galore. I was oblivious to this. And, no one ever mentioned it before. After changing my diet I began to feel better. From there, it was a natural progression to start to exercise. I simply felt better and felt like moving my body in healthy ways. I began slowly. I walked, did tai chi, and yoga, etc. After another six months or so, I understood the need for better stress-management practices. I learned how my stress levels were tied to my negative thinking and symptom flares.
I’ve called this healing path, the Restoration Trio.
Of course, this is just a snippet of my journey, but that’s it in a nutshell.
Now, barring specific short-term problems, I live pain-free about 90 to 95% of the time. To be honest, I’m not sure if I’m really completely pain-free or if I’m just so used to how it feels, I no longer notice it. Whichever it is, it doesn’t matter since it doesn’t keep me from doing what I want to do.
Is my fibromyalgia diagnosis gone? Am I cured? Nope. Fibro is my personal checks and balance system. My little mini flares show up for me to let me know that something is out of balance. Whether it’s food, fitness, or stress. When my neck and shoulders start to feel that familiar weight and tightness, I know I need to pay attention. I take action to mitigate the flare before it can worsen.
I transformed my health from chronic illness to chronic wellness. That’s who I am today. Besides being a writer and health coach, I’m also a mom and a nana. Some say I’m a health nut. But, wouldn’t you be, too? I’m thrilled to share the great news of health and healing with others. It’s simply miraculous to experience healing from the inside out. And, I want that for you.
Comparing who I was twenty years ago to who I am today is nothing short of miraculous. I’m not just referring to my physical healing. I’m a completely different person. And, for this, I’m eternally thankful. I’m grateful for the lessons I’ve learned from my chronic illness. I know I wouldn’t have learned them in any other way.
When my pain was at its worst, I wasn’t listening to what my body really needed. I couldn’t hear it for all the noise. I understand that now when I see it in others. Sometimes healing doesn’t begin until we’re really ready.
So that’s my question for you today.
Are you ready?
Would you like guidance, support, and encouragement? My path was anything but straightforward. I did it all on my own and I now know things took much longer than they had to. Working with a Fibromyalgia Recovery Coach can definitely streamline your path as well as provide you with consistent, gentle, and much-needed nudges along the way.
Click on the Work With Sue tab today and let’s get started. And, don’t hesitate to contact me with questions. I’m here to help.