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Nicola’s Story

A woman on her Fibromyalgia recovery journey

I can’t remember when I started suffering with headaches and fatigue, but it’s been most of my adult life. I was backwards and forwards to the GP for years. I was sent for CBT and advised to drink more water, exercise more and take fewer painkillers. This didn’t work, so I learnt to live with it.

In 2009 when my dad died from a brain aneurysm, I became concerned that I had something seriously wrong. I went back to the GP who told me that the good news was that it wasn’t anything serious because I had suffered for so long that if it was serious, I would have already died!

The headaches and fatigue continued to get worse, and I started to get some back pain. In 2016 I left my job as a teacher. I thought that the stress of the job was a huge factor in my headaches and fatigue. I was wrong. Although not at all stressful my new job was a lot more physical with lots of lifting and driving. I was at a point where I woke up with a headache and went to bed with a headache and had no relief in-between.

The pain was constant. It was sometimes so bad that I would lie in bed crying telling my husband I couldn’t go on anymore. Sometimes I would sit banging my head off the kitchen table because that pain was better than the headache pain.

I couldn’t wear necklaces or scarves, I couldn’t wear my hair tied up, couldn’t wear my work lanyard, couldn’t wear certain tops and I couldn’t carry any sort of bag because it all made the pain in my back and head worse. I started to get more and more symptoms; tingling fingers, aching all over, neck pain, heavy legs, poor memory, poor concentration, depression and anxiety. 

I stopped socialising. I couldn’t keep up with conversations because my concentration was so bad, I would forget what I was saying in the middle of a sentence, I was in constant pain so just wanted to be at home in bed and I had terrible anxiety in busy places.

I planned my days around when I could have a sleep, often relying on other people to look after my daughter. When I did have her I was constantly saying “mammy can’t do that because it will hurt her back and head”.

In 2018 I read an article about Fibromyalgia. I went to the GP and suggested that all my symptoms pointed to this. He agreed, told me that he could refer me to a rheumatologist but that there was a one year waiting list and that there was nothing they could do anyway other than prescribe me pain relief which he could also do. I left with a prescription and that was it!

In November 2018 I went downstairs after a daytime sleep and my 5 year old daughter and husband were having a conversation. They were talking about something that had happened that I didn’t know about. I said “I didn’t know that” and my daughter replied with “Well if you weren’t always asleep you would!” That night, I contacted Adam.

Under Adam’s guidance, and through a personalised exercise and education program, I’ve seen a remarkable transformation in my well-being. My journey with Adam has led to a noticeable reduction in discomfort and an improvement in my overall mood. I find myself more alert, with enhanced focus and memory. The fatigue that was once a constant challenge has notably lessened, and I’m finding myself less troubled by the cold. Engaging in activities like ice skating, trampolining, biking, and other adventures has become a joyful part of my life again. Most importantly, this journey has allowed me to be more present and active for my daughter.

I wish I had known about Adam many years ago.”

A woman on her Fibromyalgia recovery journey