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So…anything happening in the news? And other updates.

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CW: This is an overall positive post but the word “suicide” does come up and IDK where everyone is around here, mentally. It’s not super heavy, just the grim, passing reflections of someone who’s been suicidal before. It’s not like, about suicide.

As you know by now, President-Elect Joe Biden is a thing. I partied over the weekend, woke up this morning and was like, wow. This is what it feels like to not wake up disappointed that I didn’t die in my sleep. Wild.

I was more or less holding off on making any, you know, plans or whatnot until after the election. It just didn’t make sense to me to be like, “Yeah, good news, I’ve got all this stuff happening and good content coming just as soon as I know that I’m not going to be sent to a re-education camp.

Since it seems safe (for now) to make future plans, I am tentatively announcing a soft release date for the final book in the Sophie Scaife series. The Daughter will, by all accounts, unless I’m crushed by something heavy or there is a military coup that seizes control of the country, be out on January 21st, 2021.

Because I’m going to be damned if I say goodbye to my imaginary friends and strand them in a Trump presidency. No way, no how.

My first Jennifer Morningstar title, In The Blood, will re-release in February 2021.

Damn, it feels so good to be able to actually write again. You guys. seriously.

Please don’t assume that it was just the election that made me regret waking up in the mornings. Nay, nay! as my good friend Kris Norris is fond of saying. Nay, nay, I have had all sorts of other bullshit going on totally unrelated to politics, white supremacy, and all that other fun MAGA jazz. I have more health bullshit!

As you may know, since I feel like I complain about it constantly, in 2009, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. Shortly after the birth of my daughter, I injured my neck while nearly missing a head-on collision with another car. Within weeks, I was calling my doctor complaining of fatigue, the pain from my moderate whiplash turned severe. I was in pain all over, a pain I could hear like a low buzzing in my ears. It took months of insisting that this was not normal childbirth recovery, that I’d had a baby before and never felt so run down and in so much pain in so many non-birth related body parts. Finally, someone listened and sent me to a specialist, and I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia.

Cut to September of last year, when I slipped and fell in the shower and broke my foot. I was prepared for my body to take a long time to stop hurting. In the years since my diagnosis, I’ve racked up a rather impressive number of accidents that have caused pain that never went away. And I don’t mean “aches and pains when the weather changes,” although I have those, too. Surgery to remove a tumor resulted in a scar that burns even when the evil wizard who put it there isn’t thinking of me. Sometimes, it feels like it’s coming open. The whiplash has never gone away; it, too, has morphed into constant burning.

I thought this was all Fibromyalgia and continued with my life.

Until one day back in September when I posted on Facebook asking if anyone else still had pain in their foot after breaking it. “It aches every time it rains,” seemed to be the most popular answer. When I tried to explain that it wasn’t an ache, that it hurts exactly the way it did the day after I broke it, someone suggested I look up Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome or CRPS. And I laughed. Because it’s a rare condition and I know someone who has it. What are the odds of that happening?

I went to my friend, whom some of you know as St. Petra of Getting Peter Capaldi to Wish Jenny a Happy Birthday, who also has CRPS. I told her how funny it was that someone would coincidentally suggest I have the same rare condition she has. And since she and I had bonded over our mutual chronic pain and she knows my symptoms, she finally told me something she’d apparently thought for a while: that my symptoms are symptoms of CRPS.

After my diagnosis, I stopped researching Fibromyalgia. What was the point? It’s incurable, I’m treating it the way that works for me, I don’t really need to obsess over it, right? I’d just been noodling along, thinking everything I was experiencing was Fibro. And then I compared and contrasted the symptoms of both and called my doctor because while I have a few symptoms of Fibro, they’re all symptoms in common with CRPS, which I check every single box on.

I am not yet diagnosed, as it is a diagnosis of exclusion. There isn’t a test for it, you just have to test for everything around it. Just like with Fibro. And that process, dear readers, is exhausting. On the heels of a year where I had two mental breakdowns, it’s really been a lot.

However, I’m positive and happy and cautiously optimistic about the future. It’s way, way better to worry about health issues when I know healthcare access will improve and that we’re not as close to plunging into full, unfettered fascism as we were last year.

I don’t really have a way to end this post, so to recap: The Daughter releases January 21, 2021, In The Blood releases in February, it’s likely I have what’s known as the “suicide disease” (which is a stupid name for it because not only is that grim as fuck for people who have it but also there’s already a disease that causes suicide and that’s called mental illness), but I’m still chugging away and things are looking the fuck up.

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  1. Amanda

    It’s such a relief when you finally have a diagnosis for something and can look forward to treatment instead of having the distinct feeling that your doctors think you’re insane.

    I haven’t been dealing with it for years but only months so it’s not nearly as bad but I’ve had a cough that showed up one morning and just won’t go away. I have a scary amount of pressure on my chest that causes a cough and sometimes it’s so bad that I puke or end up with a sharp headache. I’m terrified that one day I’m going to start choking or the pressure will be so intense, I’ll stop breathing and no one will be around to do anything about it. I’ve been to 4 doctors and have an appointment with a fifth because none of them have been able to figure out why. I keep being told that my lungs are fine but something is causing my airways to close up. I’m so sick and tired of it after a few months so I’m really sorry you’ve had to deal with this crap for years.

    You give me hope that I’ll have a diagnosis someday! And I hope they figure yours out quickly so you can start treatme!nt

    November 9, 2020
    • Amanda

      Obviously, I meant to say treatment!*

      No idea what happened there.

      November 9, 2020
  2. Perlite

    Glad that your month has been trending towards the more positive side. Always a relief when you can put a name to your pain. Hoping everything will continue to get better and I am looking forward to your upcoming works

    November 10, 2020
  3. Sarena

    My mom was diagnosed with CRPS in 2011 after breaking her foot. She underwent ketamine treatment at Toronto Western hospital. (We’re Canadian) it gave her back her life and helped tremendously with depression. I don’t think it’s as rare as we think! I wish you well!

    I originally posted this under the wrong post ‍♀️

    November 10, 2020
  4. Tsunami

    I’m glad you finally have found your diagnosis! I work in healthcare (Occupational Therapist), and have worked with people with CRPS before and it does get better with time and a good healthcare professional who would listen to you.

    November 11, 2020

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