Guest Post: Planning a Wedding Around Chronic Pain and Fatigue – Focus on Fibromyalgia

Nothing much for me to do here except introduce the lovely Laura, who has written an awesome guest post for you guys.  Enjoy!
Hi to Vicky’s lovely readers – I’m Laura and I blog at Petitmoi Bigworld. I blog about a variety of subjects but one of the things I find hardest to write about, on my own blog, is my health. I’m not sure why but it’s easier to write about my chronic health issues, and my mental  health issues, when I’m writing it for someone else!

Firstly, I understand if you think this post might not be relevant to a lot of people but please give me the benefit of doubt – I’ve tried to make it something that’d mean something to most people. If you don’t have a chronic health condition then maybe this’ll help you realise what sufferers go through, and for those of you who have chronic pain but don’t have a wedding to plan, well maybe it’ll serve as a good reminder that it’s ok to step back and take 5, because the majority of fibro, ME and other chronic pain/exhaustion sufferers that I know aren’t very good at giving themselves a break (myself included)
Everyone knows how much planning goes in to a wedding but you wouldn’t believe how much More it takes when you have to consider the symptoms of chronic health conditions. I’ve not even managed through someone else’s wedding since my fibro reached its worse so I’m already wanting to go to bed just imagining my own! 
The extra level of planning started as early as clothing. I’ve never been one for high heels but since the fibro got worse I struggle to wear much more than trainers and, as comfy as they are, even I don’t really want to wear trainers with my wedding dress. Everyone knows the prettiest shoes tend to have the highest heels but I know that, half an hour in to the wedding, when my feet will already be protesting I’ll be so grateful that I spent extra time finding something beautiful, with a nominal heel. And the same goes for the dress, a Lot of wedding dresses have corseting but back when my health was better and I used to wear corsets on nights out, the pain, oh the pain, so I am so so glad that’s not going to be an issue when I’m having such an important day, I’ll be able to breathe without wanting to cry and that’s always a plus! 

Something else I’ve had to consider is alcohol. I don’t drink much, anyway, but with the medication I’m on I can react to alcohol quite a lot. Thankfully, one of the welcome drink options, for our day, is Pimms and that’s something that’s gentle enough that I can get away with a glass and not need to worry about going to sleep in the corner half an hour later (A few sips of wine at the Ojon event and that’s exactly what I wanted to do!) I’d hardly want to get drunk on my wedding day but it will be nice to be able to share a drink or two with my friends and family!

We’ve been lucky enough to have a hotel room for the night included in our wedding package, but if we hadn’t I think we’d have wanted to book one anyway, partly for convenience for the night but also because I’m going to want to take half an hour to go and lay down after the meal and before the evening do. It might be Very bad form for the bride to disappear but that’s just the way that it is, I am going to need a rest and hopefully my family and friends will understand that. 

That leads on nicely to the photos. I haven’t sorted anything out, yet, but I’m going to need to be able to go and sit down from time to time if I don’t want my photos to look overly agonising. The photographer has already been told we won’t be doing anything acrobatic but, with fibro pain, sometimes standing feels like a workout in itself. I know my photographer is going to need to get a lot done but I am going to need a break from time to time if I want to be able to even Try to smile (I’m not good at smiling in photos at the best of times) 

One of the most important things about the day is the people, and that goes even more when it comes to something like fibro, or any other chronic illness. There’s always going to be people that don’t understand but I’m lucky that I have a good few people who will happily help me hide out for ten minutes and get a breather, who’re going to understand when I can’t stand and chat right now and who will, after I’ve spoken to them before hand, be able to help out with things if need be.
Another thing I’ve considered is the food. Our menu choice was quite simple, but there’d have been certain food items I’d have wanted to have avoided in order to preventing any undue bloating, why thank you IBS! And, lastly, well there’s cake. Ok so there doesn’t need to be any health conditions (for me) involved in cake but I am intent that there’ll be Good cake! I’m going to find the day really tough so cake will definitely help me keep going haha! 

There’s so many bits and bobs in between that you can’t plan for, but this is the sort of thing someone with chronic pain/exhaustion needs to think about on a normal day, let alone something as important as their wedding day. I want to enjoy our day and I want everyone else to , too, it’ll probably take a week to recover from it but hopefully all these little provisions will help the whole day go a little more smoothly. 

I really loved reading Lauras post.  I think she’s highlighted here so many of the issues that people with chronic pain and life limiting conditions have to deal with on a day to day basis.  The 100 little choices that have to be made, ‘will I do this or this’, because you don’t have the energy for both.  There’s a reason we’re called ‘Spoonies’ and for anyone who hasn’t read The Spoon Theory I highly recommend it, especially if someone you love has a chronic condition.

As a girl brought up on Disney I love a happy ending, so I asked Laura if I could post a photo of her and her gorgeous fiance.  Here’s a beautiful snap of the happy couple to be.

Do you have a chronic illness or know someone who does?  Can you think of any ways to make day to day life more bearable during a flare?  Do you find big events fun or frustrating?

3 thoughts on “Guest Post: Planning a Wedding Around Chronic Pain and Fatigue – Focus on Fibromyalgia

  1. I have Fibromyalgia and Ankylosing Spondylitis and so I know what it is like to be in pain 24/7. It is just so hard living day to day, and I have to go to work everyday to hepl raise my little boy, and it is so hard, that some days I just want to give in.

  2. It is hard isn't it Zoe. Though we'd all rather do without it we find a way to push through. Love and hope to you x

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