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Been great to see so much awareness raised from @mammajlloyd & @MissDLloyd interview on Lorraine. Thank you for sharing your story.

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Lizi's Mcgarvey sponsored slim for FMA UK

Lizi shared with us her moving story and why she has embarked on sposnored sliming for FMA UK: ‘’I started feeling unwell when I was 13 with a headache (I was never ill before then not even with a childhood illness). We thought it was the school head virus that I had caught but the headache never went away!  I am now 49 years old!

Af first when the headache never went my mum thought it was fear of my strict Sardinian dad, who I was scared of and whom mum and I needed to keep secrets from to stop him from going mad with anger. It’s amazing how keeping stuff in and not saying what you really want to can affect your mental and physical health.

My mum had an accident with me when I  was 2 and fell backwards out of a pram and needed stitches to the back of my head - they say Fibromyalgia can be due to emotional of physical trauma - both of which I had been going through! My dad said my head pain was because I was “crazy” and that mental health problems should not exist in our family as it was a bad thing not to be talked about ( although now grown up with my own kids I can see how dad was probably mentally ill to due to his past but would never show it).

From the day I got my first headache I had to go through all my exams with this daily pressure and my mum pushed me in my exams (but in a good way!) and when I failed I psyched myself up for hours thinking how would I tell my dad without him going mad - but actually he liked it when I did come to him.

I then got all the childhood illnesses from then and through university as my immunity seemed low.

I never really knew what was wrong with me though so my mum took me to spine specialists, chiropractors, osteopaths, surgeons to try and help a little but nothing helped (and I felt like I would somehow be lost without my headache as it was all I know!!). 

I realise now that my posture probably didn’t help the pain but refused a body cast at 17!!

The osteopath I saw at 18 said “ My neck is already like that of a 90 year old! and that to drink my own urine would help!!“. I left devastated as no one seemed to be taking me seriously.

Then the pains started in every joint (My nana and mum had osteoperosis so I thought I was in for this too! But that was not the case!

Over the years, mum took me for brain scans at the National Hospital and the Atkinson Morley Hospital, which revealed nothing – upsetting as I thought if there was something they could pick up on scans then I would be able to be cured! So I had on and off psychological and psychiatric therapies (I was obviously a nutter if there was nothing physical showing up!!).

As I entered my 20s and 30s and 40s, I kept looking for a reason or a cure, which led me to some crazy therapies. Amongst the traditional and the obscure I have tried the following:- My OT colleague at work said it may be fibromyalgia, which I researched and agreed with (GPs still do not understand or recognise it- although a locum GP when I was 30 did refer me to rheumatology- a forwards step!.

Rheumatology ( not arthritis in the end though so no wonder it didn’t work!)

Myers Cocktail at Devonshire Clinic under Prof Davies - intramuscular bottom injection which was painful but gave me some energy.

Eating only green foods to aid with the energy but did nothing for the pain.

I tried massage, aromatherapy, crystal healing, reconnective therapy, cranial osteopathy, cranial sacral therapy, Tarot reading, angel healing, operations, Alexander technique and even visualisation with aliens!!! (people cashing in on those with ailments!!).

I am now 49 and I realised that for whatever reason, nothing is healing me so I let my wonderful friend, Laurence know (she shares the same disease) and I then joined her support group-  fibrotastic support, which makes me feel not alone. My symptoms were all the same as the others in the group- fibromyalgia.  The IBS symptoms and the memory problems have been getting worse and that has affected my anxiety and anger.  The former I decided was worse when I ate sugars so I decided to give up sugars and I know it is the right time to do this as my weight gain from comfort eating due to feeling low due to not knowing why I felt so rotten meant I was going to need a hip replacement - hence the realisation I was over eating, the acknowledgement of the obsession and then immediate new healthy eating programme.

To keep me focused, what better way than to donate any sponsored weight loss money to the charity that researches my disease - Fibromyalgia Action UK

 Lizi x ‘’

To donate visit Lizi’s Justgiving page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Liz-mcgarvey1

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