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"My Bout with & VICTORY over Depression & Fibromyalgia!"

. . . Continued

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A GetWell Friend and naturopathic doctor, upon first getting The First Printing of The Health Seekers' YearBook, wrote to me: "My Dear, Your credibility is impressive. Apparently you have experienced everything you have written about." Well, I certainly can add "clinical depression" and "fibromyalgia syndrome" as notches to my belt! This Bout with and VICTORY over these 2 conditions have definitely added an urgency to "Victoria's Calling" of getting out "The Message & Promise of Natural Hygiene." And this trip into and out of depression/fibromyalgia has added a depth of "Compassion for The Human Condition" that good money could not begin to buy! So, in this quick insert, let me share more with you what I experienced at my worst and what I learned at my best, with the idea that you would go on this trip with me vicariously and learn from it, as well! Here we go...

At one point, I was in so much physical pain that I felt that if I had only 2 choices for the rest of my life to learn to live with the pain or to be paralyzed from the neck down and be completely out of the pain I would have to think long and hard before making the decision. Another example, it took me 20 seconds to get out of a low-sitting chair and stand in a full, upright position. The pain had me moving in slow motion! Another, I had to swing my leg back and forth 2 times to get it up into my pick-up, as I could only lift my leg 2 inches off the ground. Another, I had to go down stairs one step at a time and could not lower myself with a normal step down. And OH! My Achilles' heels in the mornings were the worst! (Mornings, in fact, just like the books all say, were really the worst!) My heels were so tight with


pain, I could hardly stand on my feet. And when I did, my balance felt shaky, like I needed a walker! Another, I could only lift 3 pounds without pain this from a strong woman who could have previously bench-pressed 55 pounds! And when bedtime came? I never felt like I had never truly woken up for the day! I was chronically sleepy. A thick capsule of cotton barricaded me from the world. Dr. Vetrano diagnosed "severe trauma," when I related this "cotton effect." Today, the whole thing sounds very scary. But when I was at my worst, I was totally blasé toward these symptoms when they were at their worst! After all, I was depressed!

When I would leave my motel room, there in Montana, and would interact with gas station and grocery store clerks, or when I would simply pass people out and about instead of my usual smiling and bubbling, extra friendly, spreading-joy-wherever-I-go SELF I was aware of avoiding eye contact, minimizing conversation, and wanting to keep all people away from me. I felt wounded and like further human contact would make me worse. (This is a far cry from The Victoria BidWell I had known all my life!) Even while driving in traffic, I was aware of wanting to make minimum human contact. (It was so interesting, since I was so used to being so out-going!) Then, one day, I realized, I was functioning at a level where many people function all the time: minimum contact, perfunctory conversation, dull eyes, forced smiles, a distinct lack of spontaneity and reaching out, and a just "get in and get out" attitude. And it was then that I realized that many people are somewhat depressed much of the time! My direct


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