About Me

About the blog:
Restoring My Soul is a blog designed to offer spiritual encouragement and inspiration for those suffering from chronic illness, specifically chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia.  As a Christ follower, I desire to share how God has used illness in my life to serve Him and others in spite of the suffering.  My goal is to share what comforts and inspires me to keep going and I hope it will encourage others along the way.  I am called to be a servant of Christ in spite of my circumstances.  It isn’t always easy, but He has promised sufficient grace.
 About Me:
I am a 37 year old stay at home mother of five.  I live in the Panhandle of Florida along the beautiful Gulf Coast.  I’ve been happily married to the love of my life for 15 + years.   I’ve had chronic fatigue syndrome since 1995 and somewhere along the way I also developed fibromyalgia.  I have dealt with these syndromes for my entire adult life.  It is all that I know.  I’ve heard it said that if you want to write about something, you need to “write what you know.”  Well, I know chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia and I strive to know my Saviour more everyday.

I have five beautiful children and we had them all in the span of six and half years.  I don’t really recommend that plan, especially for someone who has CFS and fibro, but they are wonderful blessings in our life.  I have 2 girls and 3 boys – their ages are 9,8,6,6, and 3.  For the most part, I had really great pregnancies and my CFS and fibro symptoms were much milder when I was pregnant.  This could explain why I had so many kids in such a short amount of time!!  My husband, Tony, is my best friend.  He is my greatest support system through this journey of illness.  When we dated, I was not sick.  The illness showed up during our engagement and our whole married life has been shadowed by these syndromes.  He is an amazing person and rarely, if ever, complains of the struggles and challenges I face.  He is quick to jump in when I don’t feel well and even though he can never understand what I go through, he has great compassion and sympathy for me.  I also have very supportive parents who live in the same town as we do.  I could never have become the mother of five kids without their help and encouragement.  The task of raising children is hard all by itself, but add in some CFS and fibro and it is near impossible.  I live by the grace of God everyday and am blessed to have such a wonderful family that loves and supports me.

I have a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education and a Master’s degree in Vocal Performance.  I am a semi-professional opera singer – meaning I sing professionally when I have the time and energy, which these days is rare because I am in the throes of child rearing and managing my health.  I have enjoyed teaching music lessons in the past, but my passion is performing on stage in opera, musical theater, or anything that requires costumes, stage make-up, a big stage, bright lights and an audience.  I often grieve that I cannot live out my passion fully because of my illness.  It’s hard to let that go. I do however, regularly sing at church in the choir and as a soloist and I am thankful to be able to participate in that ministry.

My goal for this blog is very simple.  I want to bring glory to my God.  I have had this illness since 1995.  Long enough to know A LOT about it.  Long enough to grow weary of the daily routine.  I need a new outlet to express myself and I need a reason for this illness to make sense in my life.  God has allowed this illness for a reason and I aim to fulfill its purpose.  I want to help those who are on this same journey of uncertain health and hopefully provide some encouragement along the way.  I want to empathize with those who are suffering and offer support where I can.  I want to bring attention to chronic illness so the research will continue.  I have great hope that in my lifetime there will be a known cause and cure for both CFS and fibromyalgia, but until then I am on this God ordained journey.  Let’s travel together.

-Ann

19 thoughts on “About Me

  1. Pingback: My First Post! | Restoring My Soul

  2. Wow….It’s almost as If I am reading my own story….expect I only have two children…I also suffer with endometrosis that affects my chances to concieve….and I 39 and been married for 15 years as well….I have been living with pain since I can remember especially my adult life and what a journey it has been. I daily look to God for strength to just put one foot before the other and trust God….Thanks for your sharing….I have only been wrtiting for a few months as an outlet and a means to help those around me to understand the daily struggles….

  3. Pingback: Who Am I? | Restoring My Soul

  4. Ann, I am excited to have found your blog. I can relate to everything you’ve said. I am 44 & have suffered with cfs & fibro since my second son was born in 1998. I have 3 children (16, 13 & 10) — 2 boys & a girl and they wanted to try homeschooling so now we homeschool after them having all been in the local public school. I love Christ and I want to live for Him to the fullest realizing that I will do everything I can do to “help myself” feel better — avoid sugar, etc. but that I look normal & healthy to everyone but yet I suffer very limiting/debilitating symptoms chronically on some level.
    Thank you for what you’ve shared.

  5. I just started reading here tonight, and what I read made my cry. I love the Lord, too, and have spent my years serving HIm. I have had fibro since I was sixteen and then mono and chronic fatigue syndrome came on while I was in college. I am now in my late 60s. I have raised four children, three biological and one adopted at ten, and had a teen foster son for two years. I am trained as an elementary and music teacher and have worked in both types of teaching when I was well enough. I was on disability in the early 90s, but I found help, got off it and went back to teaching in 1999. I have taught music in Catholic schools since 2002 until last June, when my current school closed. I am now applying for a long term sub job in instrumental music. I play piano and organ, but I was a vocal major in college. Ann, I would love to hear you sing. Thank you so much for providing a place for us to be encouraged and to share. God bless your day.

  6. I don’t suffer from any of these or related conditions, but several of my best friends in the world (and their sisters!) do. Thank you for your ministry! I will recommend your blog to those who are online. 🙂 God bless!

    • What a great friend you are! One of the best things you can do is offer encouragement and support to your friends with fibro. It sounds like that is exactly what you are doing! Thanks for reading! Blessings!

  7. So glad my daughter found your site for me. We also have much in common besides the chronic conditions. I have a degree in music (instrumental major, vocal minor) and have taught private lessons and sung for many years. I also have a speaking/writing ministry and love to connect with people who need similar encouragement. Thanks for your ministry. Please check out mine!

  8. So glad to find your site too!! I am a Christian B.S.N. Nurse who developed Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome from a viral and bacterial infection where my symptoms started suddenly and I thought my pain was a heart attack!! I ahven’t worked for the last 4 years; but I have kept myu liciense active and am a Volunteer parish Nurse- I workin a health minstry in order to start and facilitate a chronic pain and chronic illness support group with 9 chruches.// I find hope when I am with them all- we meet once a month some of them don’t even have a computer or email- I hav eencoruaged them to go to the library- but those that are on the web- I will point them to your blog too!! Even though i haven’t been doing too well- I am getting closer to the Lord- I pray for healing too- and have found the most help at http://www.endfatigue.com- Please check it out- it is the website of Dr. Jacob Teitelbaum, the world reknown research Dr. who has had this too;and has devoted His life to finding effective treatment- I would get hsi book -it Will help all of you- called “From Fatigue to Fantastic and go on his website- he has tons of research articles and help there!!! You can also become his facebook fan and ask Him questions for free!! Glad to find you!! God’s Blessings, and Christ’s Love, April

    • Hi April! Glad to have you reading! I am a big fan of Dr. T too! He offers lots of good advice for finding a way to wellness based upon your symptoms. Thanks for sharing! What a great ministry you have helping those with chronic illness. Yes, please share the site with those who need the encouragement! I’m sorry that you aren’t doing well, but I hope you find love and support here! Blessings to you!

  9. I am so thankful to have found your website. Thank you for sharing this so it can help others that are suffering with these diseases. It really is a blessing to find others who can share helpful information and insight also. God Bless you. Monnette

  10. Just found your blog by accident on Pinterest… So glad that i did and excited to follow it… I too have suffered a long time with both CFS and Fibro, many long frustrating years to find a doctor that would diagnosis instead of trying to give me antidepressants…after 6 years of going to different doctors, specialist, testing finally got diagnosed in 2002…but like you i can recall lots of issues from childhood that i know now were related…. i have two wonderful daughters and have been married to my husband for 24 years this month….looking forward to following your blog and reading everyone’s post…. God is good all the time… Heard a song this week at Church that i was not familiar with but fell in love with, here is the chorus: Hold on, hold on. Through every storm, hold on. Even in the darkest night, Walk by faith not sight. Hold on, hold on.

    • Hi Shelia! Welcome to the blog! I hope you find encouragement here. Thank you for sharing your story. I am sorry that you have to walk this journey, but I love your positive attitude! Keep holding on…

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