Roll Away Our Stones

On Wednesday, John and I are going to see my favorite band, Mumford and Sons. I am extremely excited and this was kind of both of our big Christmas/Birthday/Valentines gift to one another because I got the tickets too late and basically paid an astronomical amount for them.

It’s worth it for us though. Or, maybe I should say for me. John loves them, but not quite as much as I do. I sometimes think there is a 6th sense and that is the thing you experience when a song touches something in you that seems otherworldly. It’s bigger than the sense of hearing, because an amazingly written song can bring all of your senses into sharp focus.

I wrote something about Mumford & Sons a few years ago that I wanted to reshare.


A song that I have heard this year which has touched me deeply is “Roll Away Your Stone” by one of the best bands to emerge in the past five years, Mumford and Sons. For about the past 6 years, while I was able to experience many joys in life, especially my two children, Shaila and Nico, I found myself struggling with physical pain and weakness that doctors could not diagnose. I found myself feeling increasingly helpless. The doctors told me I was depressed, to which I replied, well, “Well duh. How long did it take you to get that degree again?” (Apparently it made me cranky too).

If you feel sick ALL the time and your body hurts so much that you have to give up the things that you love – like running, it makes you sad. Holding a guitar was hard on me, someone who had always taken pride in my athletic strength and abilities.

Holding my kids was tough, but that was one thing I always pushed through.

So yeah, the doctors told me it was depression, which I acknowledged could be a secondary issue.

Again, its a little bit of the chicken and the egg conundrum – which came first? Not positive, but I felt like the physical limitations did push my world into some darkness.

I could barely lift my kids. Look, if that’s not depressing, I really don’t know what is.

This year the diagnosis turned to one of fibromyalgia. To which I said, “Fibro my WHAT?!” As I listened to the doctors explain the symptoms, I started to feel relieved. I FINALLY had an answer. The symptoms I had matched the symptoms of fibromyalgia. Basically you hurt all over. Your muscles could be crunchy like mine were. You could have exhaustion which could render you more tired than the most tired pregnant woman.

But the relief kind of turned to something else pretty soon.

I let the doctors prescribe me meds. And the meds took away some of the pain but made me even more tired. And I couldn’t help but feel that maybe this wasn’t the problem either.

And I realized I would not let this physical pain continue.

So I fought. I fought to have MRIs. I made finding a solution a priority. I made coming up with a recovery plan more than just “upping” my meds. I think the enormity of what my life would become if I accepted this diagnosis hit me when I went to my rheumatologist. I could tell she was busy but wanted to get more than a five minute checkup.

“So how are you doing since I put you on the Lyrica?”

“I think it helps.” Just to be clear, Lyrica would help with pain for almost anybody. Like if you had a broken nail, it would help.

“Well, let’s go on and up yours then. Let’s double it.”

Um, ok. And I realized that my path to recovery would always just be about conquering the systems, not the underlying issues if I did things this way.

I wasn’t going to take this lying down, even if that is the position you want to be in if you really have fibromyalgia. Lying down in a bed, for long periods of time where sleep washes over you like the warmest blanket.

I decided to lift that blanket. To reduce the meds. To look for real answers. Sometimes those are with a doctor. Sometimes they reside with me.

And I am trying to get stronger every day. There are days when the diagnosis feels like a distant memory and I forget about it completely. And then there are days where I am thrown into a fatigue so deep that when my children stand next to my bed and say, “Mommy, are you sick?” I can hardly look up to reassure them that I just need a little rest. Even though it’s much more than that.

You told me that I would find a hole,
Within the fragile substance of my soul
And I have filled this void with things unreal,
And all the while my character it steals

Darkness is a harsh term don’t you think?
And yet it dominates the things I seek

It seems that all my bridges have been burned,
But, you say that’s exactly how this grace thing works
It’s not the long walk home 
that will change this heart,
But the welcome I receive with the restart

I look at the past few years as a long walk in many ways and to be honest, I wasn’t sure if I was going to make it home. Some bridges have surely burned, those which should have even earlier and those which were too unstable to begin with.

By and large, the ones that needed to remain intact, have. I am able to plot a course to where I need to go with the support of those bridges.

In the last line of the verse, Mumford uses the word “Restart.”

I have decided to restart. This blog represents the me I want to embrace going forward. There are times where I have to restart again. Maybe not all the way back to the beginning, but I take a few big steps backward and have to remember that it’s not a race. That I am not racing myself.

I have to just remind myself that I am stronger than I think and I can burden the weight of these stones. And I have to start pushing the ones I can’t hold away.

“It seems that all my bridges have been burned,
But, you say that’s exactly how this grace thing works”

I am always trying to find my grace. I still don’t know how this grace thing works. Trying to figure it out is tough. And maybe in finding grace, we have to stumble a few times and be quite graceless about the whole thing. And I tell myself it’s okay.

Please join me? We can start with small grace things like telling each other if we have spinach stuck in our teeth as a starting point before moving on to bigger things.

Rolling away our stones. Together.


15 Comments on Roll Away Our Stones

  1. ilene
    February 11, 2013 at 10:26 pm (2 years ago)

    I 100% respect you for facing your diagnosis the way you did – to look at the the underlying issues. I think that as a society, we are a people who prefer to deal with symptoms and we never get to the bottom of anything that way, and always have something or someone else to blame for our “problems.” It’s tougher to drill down – but I firmly believe that the end result is worth working for – and the change will be long lasting.
    ilene recently posted…My Evil MistressMy Profile

  2. Peg
    February 12, 2013 at 12:12 am (2 years ago)

    We’ll be there too! Totally can’t wait. Mumford!!

    One of my favorite posts of yours. Going through a similar thing myself. Thanks for the reminder to roll away my stone and take control of things again.

    you totally rock my chica!!

  3. AJ Collins
    February 12, 2013 at 12:18 am (2 years ago)

    I have a couple of different friends who have fibromyalgia… but neither one faced it with that same attitude. I love it! So positive! It’s a crappy disease, but I do believe a positive outlook has a HUGE impact on it. Proud of you! Keep rolling those stones! BTW I have had people tell me to listen to Mumford and Sons for awhile… telling me it would be up my alley… because of this post I listened and have now downloaded their latest album. Really good! Thanks for that.
    AJ Collins recently posted…Five Ways to Raise Kids who Love GodMy Profile

  4. Erin Zito
    February 12, 2013 at 7:58 am (2 years ago)

    I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia about 12 years ago and I can really relate. I have reached the point where I have given up on medicine to treat it. I listen to my body and try not to do more than it can handle. It’s still a daily struggle with pain, fatigue, and depression, and I still have flare-ups which incapacitate ,me for days at a time. All we can do is try to accept things for what they are. I like the whole grace idea. I’m going to have to do some thinking about that. :-)

  5. Lisa
    February 12, 2013 at 12:05 pm (2 years ago)

    Wow. I didn’t know that. How are you now? I am a big believer of the connections of mind, body, and spirit and our ability to heal our bodies by keeping all of that in balance (as you may or not have read…funny – I just posted a “health” related essay, too – must be a full moon or something). Thanks for the song – I hadn’t heard it before :) And be well, friend. Have fun at the concert.
    Lisa recently posted…To Glow or not to Glow…That Was The QuestionMy Profile

  6. Renée Schuls-Jacobson
    February 12, 2013 at 12:57 pm (2 years ago)

    So awesome that you are going to see Mumford & Sons. I thought they were going to get waaaaay more awards at the Grammy’s than they did. I hope you have an amazing time. I have been on a medical journey of my own this year — and yes, sometimes doctors prescribe medications because that is what patients expect — a fix on a little piece of paper.

    And yet.

    Sometimes that puts us into a deeper hole.

    So I’m glad you’ve crawled out of yours.

    And I hope your bones are ready to dance at BlissDom.

    I just have to be in by 11 PM or I turn into a pumpkin.

    {Your posts still aren’t showing up on I think you have to accept the new invitation to join the tribe as a member. It should be there under If you don’t know how to do it, ask @gfunkified. Her stuff is streaming beautifully.}
    Renée Schuls-Jacobson recently posted…Getting to Gnome You: Valentine’s Day StoriesMy Profile

  7. Mary
    February 12, 2013 at 1:50 pm (2 years ago)

    You’re a brave woman to face this disease with determination and grace. Godspeed to you as you recover. And thank you for the invitation to join in this recovery journey. I’ve face health issue myself over the past few years and am grateful for all the loving support I’ve been given. The “only out way out is through” and the through is infinitely more appealing (and fun) with others. I’m in! Enjoy the concert! Wonderful post!
    Mary recently posted…Parental Redemption: The Coach Mike VersionMy Profile

  8. Angela
    February 12, 2013 at 8:47 pm (2 years ago)

    I just recently found your blog via the Bloggess, I’m very happy I did. You have an amazing spirit and outlook, I have two friends who also have fibromyalgia and know how overwhelming it can be at times. I love your writing–Finding the bridges that support you and burning the bridges that don’t and finding grace in small things -you are on the right path and I sincerely hope your journey is smooth and full of good health, joy and peace. P.S. so very envious, Mumford and Sons are amazing, love their sound and their lyrics. I know you will have an awesome time.

    • masalachica
      February 12, 2013 at 11:19 pm (2 years ago)

      Hi Angela,
      I am so glad you found me and I hope you become a regular around here ;-). It is overwhelming and there are times I can forget I have it until a flare up or episode takes me out of commission. Those times are just hard. I know that Mumford will be great – they are such an inspiration to me. I’m a musician and right now a lot of their work and Ed Sheehan’s work is influencing some of the stuff I am writing now.

      I wish your friends the best on their journey as well. Let them know they have a sister here!

  9. Jen
    February 15, 2013 at 2:16 pm (2 years ago)

    I am a huge fan of Mumford and Sons as well and was so bummed that we didn’t get tickets for the concert Wednesday night! My friend went and said it was amazing! I also live in NoVA and have struggled with not feeling right for years – probably since my first baby was born back in 2001. I was finally diagnosed with lupus 3 years ago and struggled with finally having a name for why I felt so bad but having no idea what to do now! I started seeing a rheumatologist who ended up just pushing meds on me and didn’t answer my questions and didn’t direct me to any information. I was a mess. I finally did some research and started attending support group meetings and found out that my doc was an imbecile and was given names of competent and excellent rheumatologists. I also finally felt like I could really talk about what was going on with me without judgment because even though my husband is great and supportive, he was scared about what was going on with me and couldn’t really relate. It saved my sanity. And now I have a team of doctors that talk to each other and have taken me off all meds and I’m in a much better place. Feel free to contact me if you want any referrals! I just recently discovered your blog and I absolutely love it!

  10. Alma
    February 16, 2013 at 12:40 am (2 years ago)

    Shut up! I am so jealous. Mumford and Sons is my favorite band. I would love to see them live in GA.
    Their last album got me through a difficult time and always felt renewed and clear.
    I still listen to it. The words… its the words.
    With clarity you find you are stronger than you think and the answers reside in you.
    Great post!
    Alma recently posted…Nourishing the SpiritMy Profile

  11. Joey
    February 21, 2013 at 6:51 am (2 years ago)

    Well-said. Kudos to your restart. I also love Mumford&Sons.

  12. The Bride
    February 26, 2013 at 3:10 am (2 years ago)

    Catching up on posts but this one touched a chord with me. Just wanted to wish you well in your Restart.

  13. Shaun Hoobler
    November 7, 2013 at 4:37 am (2 years ago)

    I love Mumford and Sons too. One of my favorite bands. Was the concert fun?
    Shaun Hoobler recently posted…android app devMy Profile


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

CommentLuv badge