07 Oct Voices of Fibro-Lauren Tait
Your Name (as you want it shared)
- Lauren Tait
- Indianapolis, IN
Give me some basics…. Are you married? Kids? Work? What do you enjoy?
- 26 years old
- Currently I live in Indianapolis, IN but dream of living out West!
- Work: I am a Certified Professional Coach (CPC) more specifically a Health, Wellness & Accountability coach and work with anyone who is seeking a healthier lifestyle, but I specialize in working with people who have Fibromyalgia. I coach clients through the company that I just recently Founded, Klimb and Konquer, and am very excited for what is to come! Klimb and Konquer was built on the methodology that I personally created, “movement of the body stimulates movement of the mind”. When we as humans move our bodies, when we get up off the couch and stop feeling sorry for ourselves, when we can actually show action, our mind follows, and it is amazing how much we can transform when we just move the needle 1% each and every day.
- A little more about me, I absolutely love spending an endless amount of time getting caught up in hours of conversation with friends and family. I grew up on beautiful Lake Wawasee, which has made me have a deep love and passion for water so anything that I can do on a body of water, count me in! I also love the west, specifically hiking up the mountains and skiing down them.
- When I am not doing something active outside, you can find me in a CrossFit gym. I am a competitive CrossFit Athlete. In Indianapolis I train at one of the top gyms in the country, Broad Ripple Fit Club, which is led by an insanely wise and talented man Jeff Edwards, followed by an incredible coaching staff.
When did you first realize there was something different about your health?
- I can remember during my senior year of college basketball something just feeling off, but I pushed it off as pain from my ACL surgery, and depression from my father passing away months prior. It was not until a couple years later in the summer of 2016, when I woke up one morning and I felt as though I was trapped inside of someone else’s body. That day, I routinely went to the gym and collapsed. No joke, I have never been the same since.
When were you diagnosed? How old were you at the time?
- I was diagnosed in February of 2017. I was 25 years old.
How did your fibro diagnosis change your life?
- Being diagnosed with Fibromyalgia has changed my life in a way that is very hard to put into words. All I can really say is that having Fibromyalgia has put many things in my life into a different perspective. Even though the pain can be incredibly overwhelming and in the beginning I let the diagnosis mentally defeat me, now Fibromyalgia has given me the opportunity to cherish each day and help others. I will forever be grateful for that ability.
What changes have you had to make in your life?
- Name something and I have changed it. My whole lifestyle has changed from the soap that I use in the shower to the people I interact with. The big changes have been my mindset, exercise routine, nutrition and lifestyle choices.
How did your family initially handle your illness?
- To be honest, they really did not handle it at all, as it got ignored, and I cannot blame them one bit. Fibromyalgia is pretty much invisible and with having zero experience dealing with and handling an illness such as this, my family had no idea what to do or where to turn. For the longest time, I really tried to keep as much of my pain / struggles to myself, so no one would worry about me.
- Fast forward to now, my family is my backbone. After having a couple of years under all our belts dealing with Fibromyalgia I never feel left out, and everyone is very understanding to the ups and downs that occur. But I must give a shout out to my mom. Fibromyalgia has made us so close and she has gone out of her way countless time to understand what I am going through and to locate doctors all over the country that will meet with me.
What do you feel is the most challenging aspect of Fibro?
- The inconsistency is incredibly tasking on the body and mind. Every single day is different, regardless of how routine and careful I may be.
How open are you with friends & family about your illness & symptoms?
- In the beginning I was not always very open about what I was going through. The lack of expression was created by the fear that no one really believed something was wrong with me. I lost a handful of very close friends as many of them just continued to think I was making up excuses.
- Fast forward to today, I am very open, and I want to continue to bring awareness and create a platform for those who have fibromyalgia to feel accepted and speak out.
Besides Fibro, what other coexisting conditions have been diagnosed?
- Prior to being diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, I was diagnosed with Severe Chronic Depression in the 2015 after the passing of my father. I had struggled with depression for many years prior to his passing.
- In May of 2018, I found out I have a rare version of the MTHFR Genetic Mutation which I am assuming has played a HUGE role in having Fibromyalgia.
What is the best advice you have received regarding Fibromyalgia?
- Unfortunately, I have never received great advice on Fibromyalgia, but I can say from living through it that a positive mindset is the way to go!
How do you manage Fibromyalgia?
- When I move my body, my mind moves. So… I am constantly forcing myself to move, specifically through constantly varied functional movements executed at relative high intensity. I also take time every day to write in a journal, stretch and I LOVE nature, so I get a lot of peace and joy from just simply being outside.
What or whom inspires you?
- I rely heavily on my faith for inspiration. God would not put me in this position if there was not a purpose and that alone inspires me to continue to fight and develop a method to help others!
What are your biggest battles now and how do you confront them?
- My biggest battle is myself. Fibromyalgia, as I previously mentioned, is so inconsistent. That inconsistency can make everyday life very challenging and there are days when I get caught up in the inconsistency. I feel as though I am doing something wrong and it is all my fault, when in reality that is just what Fibromyalgia is and it is not my fault whatsoever.
- In order to confront myself, which is very challenging at times, I must SLOW DOWN and breathe and remember how far I have come. Having an exceptional boyfriend and support system makes this much easier as they are always there to lift me up!
What is the best/worst thing that has happened to you due to your illness?
- Absolute best thing is the strength Fibromyalgia has brought to my relationship with my boyfriend. Taylor is an absolute man of patience, peace, joy and is so genuine. He has been there since day one when I was unable to get in and out of bed and is still here today constantly making sure I am remaining mentally positive and strong. Love that man!
- To be honest, a lot of shitty things have happened, but it is all- elative. In the moment they are terrible and heart breaking but once I overcome those challenges, each of them have made me appreciate every single moment and person in my life much more. So, with every “worst” has come many “bests”.
How do you balance your illness with your personal and professional life? Are you disabled?
- Oh, the glorious balance that Fibromyalgia forces you to incorporate into your life. My life is balanced basically through 5 core things: POSITIVE MINDSET, eating whole foods and logging everything, incorporation of daily exercise, stretching, and slowing down (writing in a journal / meditation).
Fibromyalgia can cause depression and anxiety. Do you struggle with these? If so, what do you do to keep your mental health balanced?
- At this point, I would like to think that the term “struggle” is irrelevant. I have found a way to embrace the fight with depression and anxiety. Prior to Fibromyalgia, I very rarely had any anxiety, so this is very new to me and I there are many times when I still feel as though I am trapped inside of the wrong body.But I realized that in order to understand what triggers my depression and anxiety, I had to learn to embrace it.
- I battle depression and anxiety with my love for getting creative with food, creative writing, exercise, and the outdoors.
What words of encouragement do you have for others who are living with fibro?
- Living in fear of your fibromyalgia is a waste of time. You must embrace what you have and live as though there are zero chains holding you down and/or back from being and doing exactly what you want in this life.
What is the one thing you have learned about yourself since your diagnosis?
- How strong and I am!
What is the most important piece of advice you would give someone newly diagnosed with Fibro?
- Never stop searching for a solution that is 100% individualized to you. Fibromyalgia is not something that can be cured the same way or even by a pill.
- My advice to you, “Move Your Body. Move Your Mind”. When you move your body, your mind will move. When your mind moves, you begin to discover the treasure you have deep within yourself. This awareness WILL provide you with positivity, strength and your inner badass will come out!
Is there anything else you would like people to know?
- I would love to connect with anyone that has Fibromyalgia or believes they may have Fibromyalgia! Please feel free to contact me personally via email at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Are you involved in raising awareness?
- I am currently in the works of potentially partnering with a company that is very involved in the Fibromyalgia community. I want to be more involved and make this is a full-time gig!
How are you a Fibro Warrior?
- Every single day I fight to overcome Fibromyalgia. Every single day I fight to prove to my body that it can adapt and overcome. I do this with the end goal of helping others who have Fibromyalgia! I want everyone to know that Fibromyalgia is not a death sentence and it does not have to stop you from doing what you love or pursuing your passion!