Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Copycat

     I never tried to get out of gym by saying I was sick.  If I had, I would hope to be as creative as a girl who said she had an Fibromyalgic knee the doctor found on an x-ray.  She must not know that x-rays do not pick up Fibromyalgia and it doesn't affect one location, but I love her creativity. 
     The ads on t.v. for Fibromyalgia are both a blessing and a curse.  Until the ads began, no one had heard of my disease.  Now when people discover I have it, they have a reference to start talking to me.  The ads also give a voice for an invisible disease, which is good since brain fog, pain, and fatigue, don't make us very good public speakers.  The ads also help drive companies to research and develop new medications that help make our lives a bit better.
     Unfortunately, these ads are also a curse for us.  All of the women on the ads are older.  I am not an older woman and they don't even begin to resemble my teenage daughter or the men I know that suffer from this disease.  The women on the ads talk about fatigue, but only in regards to the hobbies they can't do - such as painting or walking through Paris.  We barely manage to do our day to day tasks and our pain curls us up moaning on the floor.  The ads also convince people they know about the disease because they watched a thirty-second advertisement.  This leads to misunderstandings about what the disease really is and how it affects us each day - such as the copycat girl avoiding gym.
     I do love the fact that we have gained enough prominence to be the disease of choice for a girl trying to get out of gym.  It seems Fibromites have finally arrived!