I'm a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, which is I believe the cause of the major depression I have suffered from for most of my life. The stress has also contributed to fibromyalgia and chronic myofascial pain syndromes.
Before I was properly diagnosed, I would start working at a job, overwork myself into a state of collapse of an average period of nine months, and then lose the job as a result. After the death of my daughter's father and a fall that triggered the worst flare of my life, I finally had to quit working altogether in 2000.
After that, I focused on rearing and homeschooling my daughter and building a home for my partner and his children. We had a very good life together for many years.
After my daughter graduated and went to college, though, I had so much time on my hands that I finally started really focusing on my health. I made changes in my life to reduce stress, started exercising seriously, and started Weight Watchers. My health started improving as a result, and I had more and more energy.
My life partner and I split in early 2012 after 14 years together. Some of the tension between us was due to the changes I had made in my life, unfortunately, but I cannot regret them.
Now I'm making progress towards returning to work after 12 long years.
I blog about living well with chronic illness at http://fibrantliving.org/ . My main site is http://technomom.com , and my professional portfolio is at http://cynthiaarmistead.com/ . I write about lifelong learning at http://academycaritas.org , which was originally a homeschooling blog.