As many of you know, I suffer from a condition called Fibromyalgia among many others. Fibromyalgia — called fibro or FM for short — is believed to be a disease of the central nervous system. People with this condition suffer intense, widespread pain and crushing fatigue. It can completely disable a person and destroy their lives. Up to three percent of the population may get this disease at some point in their life, although many go for years without obtaining a proper diagnosis. There is only one drug so far (approved in the US only) and that only works for a percentage of the population and only dampens some of the symptoms. We usually have pain every moment of every day and can find it difficult, perhaps even impossible, to find the energy to get out of bed, dress or leave the house. It is not a lack of willpower, but a chronic, permanent illness. It is like having the worst case of the flu you have ever experienced and it never goes away.
On the 10th of May, the National Fibromyalgia Association (US) is hosting a walk to raise awareness and funds for research. They have called for others — yes, even in other countries — to help them as Virtual Participants, and I am organizing a team. Walking for me is still a painful process, but I am committed to giving my all in support of this cause. Please honour my pain and hardship (it will take me at least a week to recover) with your support.
London Crawling is a pub crawl through the West End on that Saturday evening. We’re going to walk our 5K (hopefully, fingers crossed!) but take regular breaks to sit down, rest and perhaps have a half. (Alcohol not required, indeed not recommended for many on certain pain medications!) It’s social but socially conscious all in one! We’ll also be pointing out things which are hazards to the mobility impaired along our route for those who have never had cause to notice such things before.
Join our walk, either as an official Virtual participant (Cost: US$35, a non-tax deductible donation, you get an official t-shirt and your name on the virtual walkers roll) or just come along and make a cash donation. Perhaps you can match the pounds spend on beer with pounds given to Fibromyalgia research?
If you’re not in London, I urge you to become a Virtual participant anyway. You (apparently) don’t have to even walk. Maybe just walk virtually 😉 Second Life anyone? You can still be on our team even if you can’t crawl with us in person. Join in and help raise funds for this very worthy cause near and dear to my heart!
If participating doesn’t appeal, then I beseech you to consider donating. My personal sponsorship page has some more details of my personal struggle. You can join our team at the London Crawling page. You can donate either to me or to the team. And if joining the team, you can walk in my honour or anyone else you know with fibromyalgia. Let me know if you want more details for that part of the form.
Please spread the word!
I know the fad now is to offer prizes draws to those who make donations but I am not in a position to offer anything special. But I will promise a hand-made thank you card to any donor who requests one. These take my time and energy and can be a bit painful in the making so I hope that this gift will be as meaningful to you as anything else on offer.
The NFA has already helped make my life better and continues to search for ways to improve the lives of allof us with fibromyalgia. Please contribute today to keep the ball rolling and fight against this dreadful disease! I believe that donations are tax-deductible within the United States.