About

Monty and Me and Some Red Pants

So, I started this thing when I was 27 years old. Now I’m about to be 30. Ew.

My name is Mary, my dog is Monty, and here’s what happened.

I was kind of this badass gymnast when I was nine, then I got the flu and just never recovered. Like ever. I was first diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, then Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome. I had to quit gymnastics and home school the rest of 3rd grade, and then learn how to live a life with this thing inside me that no one else could really see. (Except my mom, she has the illness too)

A few years ago the illness really intensified and gradually my body sort of just fell apart. Eventually I crashed and could not recover. I woke up one morning too weak to walk to the bathroom and I was like crap, this is turning into a real problem.

In the months following that crash, I had to leave my job, boyfriend and apartment. I saw a specialist in Miami and was diagnosed with Lyme Disease among other things. I was too sick to care for myself anymore or earn money, so at 26 I moved back in with my parents. I was lucky they took me and my dog in and cared for me.  But that was really hard too–a big lesson in humility if nothing else.

After losing all my attachments, I had a lot of time on my hands. And that’s where this blog began. Me: sick, jobless, and living with my parents. No schedule, no real expectations, and a lagging social life. Admittedly I experienced some psychological “confusion” and didn’t quite know how to pursue life this way. So I began writing here. For one thing, it was something the illness couldn’t take from me. I could do it sick, from bed, from the floor of my bathroom. It also worked well as a way to give people a glimpse into the experience, and as a place for me to face the realities of my life and try to sort them out. I guess that’s what everyone is trying to do.

If anyone has the answer to life, just shoot me an email; theothergelpi@gmail.com. I’d love to hear from you.  Otherwise, the search continues.  Here are some other anecdotes from my life and how I got to be me.

I stole orange flavored tic tacs when I was 4 and my dad heard them jiggling in my osh-kosh-bgosh overalls and made me return them to the gas station.

I am the youngest of four siblings. I have two older brothers, Nick and Doug, and an older sister Amelie. They are my favorite!

My dad died of cancer when I was 12. He died on the toilet. No joke!

High school was terrible. I am in awe of people who loved high school.

I graduated from LSU with a degree in journalism. College fucking rocked.

My mom re-married a dude named Roger and in the middle of college, HE died suddenly. Yeah, that happened.

I studied abroad in France while in college and that was one of the best times of my life.

My mom re-married again, we’re keeping our fingers crossed…

I love my dog Monty. Like a lot.

307 thoughts on “About

  1. Hi Mary,
    I have just found your blog and in some ways can relate to your journey. I have an severe auto-immune disease where my muscles attack themselves. It progressed and started attacking my lungs and so I had chemo at Christmas time. Back in remission again and I take a handful of tablets everyday and am almost “normal”. My brother has fibromyalgia and lives at home with my parents and it seemed to wrap its tentacles around him like an octopus and there doesn’t seem to be much treatment. I have two children aged 10 and 8 and I live with concerns about my mortality but so far so good. I’m quite a fighter and my doctor always seems to have another trick up his sleeve. We have two dogs. Our second dog moved in 3 weeks ago and I’ve written a few posts about her antics while we’ve been on holidays. By the way, I live just North of Sydney, Australia. I’m looking forward to reading your blog and you’ll probably connect with mine and like my stories about the dogs and also skiing. I did that with the Disabled Winter Sports Association. Best wishes, Rowena

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  2. You sound like you’ve been through a lot emotionally and physically but have come out stronger as a result! I turned to blogging when I was going through my own ‘dark’ time and have tried to find the key to life though my words. Feel free to check out my writings, maybe you can find some peace within them.

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  3. Love your blog. Autoimmune diseases are life sucking harbingers of hell and you are kicking their ass! I have fibro and severe rheumatoid arthritis. From one warrior to another, keep your head up, keep fighting and keep blogging!

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  4. Hi, I am a newbie at blogging. I too was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. But I found out the cause of it was systemic Candida yeast overgrowth caused by a long period of antibiotics which killed my good bacteria as well as my bad. I did not increase my good bacteria when I was done with meds and thus the bad bacteria grew and developed. I need to take antifungals every 2 months and stay away from sugar and yeast. I haven’t read many of your blogs, but am looking forward to it!

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  5. I love your blog but the worst thing about it is knowing I’m part of your family and there is nothing I can do to help but sit and read and learn all I can.

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  6. Just came across your blog from “Fixing My Fear of Flavors” blog. Wow, you certainly have been though a lot in 27 years. I felt drawn to your blog because I am very passionate about chronic pain and illness and helping others learn how to interact with people who deal with this. Looking forward to checking out your blog!

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