"I only get one life and I will not let Fibromyalgia take the joy from my living it."

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Famous Faces of Fibro: Morgan Freeman

"Every so often he grabs his left shoulder and winces. It hurts when he walks, when he sits still, when he rises from his couch, and when he missteps in a damp meadow. More than hurts. It seems a kind of agony, though he never mentions it. There are times when he cannot help but show this. 'It's the Fibromyalgia,' he says when asked."

 I've always loved Morgan Freeman as an actor. I've known little about his private life. I was surprised to learn that he has Fibromyalgia. I was shocked to hear people's reactions. I learned about his condition on ProHealth's Facebook page. ProHealth stated, "Morgan Freeman admitted to suffering from Fibromyalgia, and now the largest Fibromyalgia organization has reached out to him. Will he become a national spokesperson? Hang on to your seats, as Fibro could get it's 'Michael J Fox' and the disease could get more respect--and funding."

 I read every comment to date and was appalled at what people were saying. Some were questioning whether he actually had it because of his symptoms. How many of us have suffered because people did not believe our symptoms or did not believe Fibromyalgia existed at all. And now we are going to turn on one of our own? If we have learned anything it is that Fibromyalgia is vast and symptoms vary from person to person. When Mr. Freeman stated, "Up and down the arm. That's where it gets so bad. Excruciating," I'm sure that he was not saying that he only had Fibromyalgia in his arm as one of the Facebook critics suggested. But symptoms can be worse in certain parts of the body. The brain is telling your body something hurts even if it doesn't have physical reason to hurt. But if you've sustained an injury which really does hurt, then the brain's signals of pain would be far more than in their "normal" Fibromyalgia overdrive.

My second aggreivement on behalf of Mr. Freeman was when people questioned whether he should be a spokesperson for Fibromyalgia on two accounts. His credibility as a person. And because he's a man! First, there is no one who is holy enough to meet everyone's expectations. He played the part of God, but it was a role. He is an actor. And the man has not even started the job as a spokesperson, so quit criticizes him for things he has not done yet in the role of a spokes person. I'm sure that in his 30 second commercial for Fibro he will not tell you who to vote for. Mr. Freeman has been unfairly compared to Michael J. Fox. I do not personally know Michael J. Fox, but I do know that he is not perfect because none of us are. We have put him on a pedestal because we watched him grow up as a child actor and we hated to see his suffering. The second reason critics have suggested Mr. Freeman cannot be a spokesperson for Fibromyalgia is because he's a man?! Oh my gosh?! Are you serious people? How long have we fought for women's rights? How long have we fought for everyone's rights? And now he can't be a spokesperson for Fibromyalgia because he's a man? Fibromyalgia does not discriminate! Despite what people believe this is not a women's disease. Men do get it. And the results are probably skewed because men are not coming forward because we portray this as a women's affliction. If we want proper research and a cure we need a greater sampling of people and this includes the men. Ok, yes, I would love for a famous woman saint to come forward and be our spokesperson, but she hasn't yet. He was brave enough to admit that he has this. It has changed his career as you can see in the movie The Magic of Belle Isle, which I loved.

And, on that topic. Some people were saying that now the "normals" are going to complain that if Morgan Freeman can do all he does with Fibromyalgia then the rest of us should get off our duff and do something. This is another chance to teach the public that Fibromyalgia is different for everyone. Some people can still function and some people are completely debilitated. Mr. Freeman should be considered an inspiration. He has had to adapt his lifestyle and his career because of this. He was brave enough to let Esquire post a video of him playing golf, which he now does with only one arm because his left hand is pretty much useless. But he didn't just give up what he loves. He adapted. What does my blog header say? I only have one life and I will not let Fibromyalgia take the joy from my living it. Well done, Mr. Freeman. He is one of us. Let's not treat him the way we have been so cruelly treated. Fibromyalgia is an unfortunate community to be in, but if you are here I would like to believe that you will be supported no matter what your gender, symptoms or person history because none of those things matter. It certainly hasn't stop Fibromyalgia from invading our lives. But we can learn one thing from Mr. Freeman. Live your life even if your swinging with only one hand.


17 comments:

  1. I completely agree! I would love to see Morgan take on this role, if he does, it could be an enormous help to all of us in raising awareness, and helping to change prevailing negative attitudes. He is the first celebrity I am even aware of that has admitted to having FM, then celebs don't take up a lot of my thoughts so I do miss a lot of updates!

    Ideally, I'd like to see a number of celebrities joining in the campaign to raise awareness, increase compassion, debunk misconceptions, and raise funds towards seeking a cure. Morgan would be an awesome role model to start this ball rolling! :D

    ReplyDelete
  2. I agree, too. How sad that people in our community would lack compassion for one of our own.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I would love for more people to come out and admit to having fibro. we need all the help we can get with this disease.I just I had the means where I could find me a good doctor that treats this. i am so tired of hurting all the time. Its takes over your life and its hard not to let it when your in so much pain.


    ReplyDelete
  4. I fell at work in 1991 and have hurt every day since. I could still work, work in my yard, play, go dancing and have a life even with all the pain. The last 5 yrs I have had no life. The pain is beyond any thing I want to live with. I cant work, work in a yard or go dancing any more. Every day is different, the pain is every where, but some spots are more painful than other parts. Yes, my neck, left shoulder, arm and fingers hurt the most and go numb. Depression goes with all of this and some days cant get out of bed because I am so tired of fighting the pain. I get migraines and headaches. I hope some one can speak for us. Morgan Freeman is a face people can relate too, I wouldn't mind him speaking for all of us at least he can understand what we go through.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was strange reading this, as I also suffer from my neck, shoulder, down arm, wrist, fingers all on right side. I had 5 discs replaced in my neck in February which helped with headaches but not the other.

      Delete
    2. Your post sounded so much like me. Neck, shoulder, muscles, elbow, wrist, hand, fingers, all on my right side. The past year I have missed more work than ever. It is very depressing.

      Delete
    3. He's no spring chicken. It might be arthritis.
      About 5 years ago I saw Morgan at a blues festival in the Mississippi Delta. He was just walking along, alone, looking at booths. I began following him. He is 12 ft tall...well almost. I followed him for about 20 minutes. I had my phone in hand but did not take 1 pic! I told my family and friends all about it. Where is the pic they wanted to know? I told them that I didn't take a pic! They said that if there was no pic, I was making it all up. I wasn't. So.....

      Delete
  5. I agree with you 100% we want so much to be understood & this is the answer i think.For a man thats loved and known by so many would be a great advocate for FM. I don't understand why all these people judge him so much when we FM get often judged everyday...here is a blog that talks about him probably not having FM & IT MADE ME SO MAD. HERE IT IS AND IM THE 1ST POST...http://fibromyblog.wordpress.com/2012/07/20/morgan-freeman-has-fibromyalgia/

    ReplyDelete
  6. Antibiotics from Fluoroquinolone group like Cipro and Levaquin can cause enormous pain and damage to body and mind. People get misdiagnosed with Fibro and other illnesses when in reality, they've been damaged with Cipro ( that has delayed effects and is toxic to all connective tissue and CNS) and it also melts cartilage. Stay away from those and please look up "Cipro is poison". Good luck to everybody and may you all heal!:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So sick of the point and blame game. Cipro isn't even a first choice antibiotic but used either when someone is allergic or grown immune, and or needs the extra boost of antibiotics because of a serious infection. I've had fibro since I was between 6-7 yes old as well as RA, and just developed other conditions as I've grown older. Need to really stop the blame game so the big companies will take the disorder seriously eventually, find the cause/s and then how to fix it...

      Delete
  7. I had spent over 15 year awaiting a diagnosis for the pain and fatigue I experience. During that time I was bullied at work for my "laziness" and my sick absenteeism. Left wondering what was wrong with me as the doctors gave me no proper diagnosis, I became depressed. It was only through a kind and sympathetic work colleague at a new job in a doctors surgery, that I gained my explanation. If any person can raise awareness of this seriously debilitating illness and allow others to understand the fluctuating symptoms, not only between individuals, but also the same individual at different times, I for one would be grateful. I do not care if it is a man or woman, an actor or scientist, whether it is someone who can play golf or someone who cannot walk unaided. If it helps any individual to gain a quick diagnosis and avoid the niave and negative stigma afilliated to this illness, then that can only be a positive thing.

    ReplyDelete
  8. There are definitely plus and minus with this but I feel that the positive effects this will have out weighs the negative doubts! Yes, he is a man, but this should help the male community "come-out" and yes he is an actor, but he is a HUMAN first, not one of his character roles.... It shows that Fibro has no limitations to where or who it hits~ And again, yes we all have similar yet different symptoms which vary from patient to patient, and then our own personal variance within our own body on a literal daily basis...
    PS> People who are already in the "light" have more attention drawn to them and what they have to say and someone like Morgan is way way way into his professional career and life to make up the fact that he has it... If he has been diagnosed I trust he has seen some of the best doctors, and the have brought him to this diagnosis.... Sorry Morgan, but welcome to club Fibro :(

    ReplyDelete
  9. Thought you should be made aware, that a Facebook page, has apparently co-opted your pages quote, (from yourself) and is attributing it to Morgan Freeman.

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=435292063237490&set=a.286148818151816.47593.285789964854368&type=1

    ReplyDelete
  10. Wow! That's impressive! I'm glad to know that I said something so astounding that someone would use it to be quoted as coming from Morgan Freeman. It would definitely sound better coming from his voice than mine, that is for sure. Thanks for letting me know. I do appreciate it.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I think this man is a great actor and I love his voice. I have fibromyalgia but mine is worse in my neck and back and arms. I am off my pain killer to prepare for a medical test next week and am really feeling it. One of my daughters also has fibromyalgia, and she has considerable skeletal issues that had been operated on, and like Mr. Freeman suffered nerve damage in her cervical area that left her in complete agony and without the full use of her arm. So I have learned that the nervous system can wreck havoc on your body firsthand and secondhand. She has been diagnosed with CRPS chronic regional pain syndrome, which coupled with the rest of her medical issues, pretty much limits her from activities a lot of us take for granted. She though, like Mr. Morgan is graced with considerable charisma. She puts up a really good front in public, but I see what she goes through everyday because she is fighting a harder fight with the depression and chronic pain than I am.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I wish he'd contact me!!! I don't think he has Fibro...I think he has something else!! The same thing I have!!

    ReplyDelete
  13. I have Fibro and another disease....his sound so much like the other disease I have!!

    ReplyDelete