I (Deb Cooke) suffered
with a number of symptoms for many years, and believed that my
medical records had me written up as a Hypochondriac. My symptoms
would vary from day to day. One day I’d have pain in my right leg
for example, and the next day would be my left arm, and ALWAYS my
I finally found a
doctor who diagnosed Fibromyalgia. When I read the symptoms for
Fibromyalgia, I cried. Here I was written down, and I wasn’t alone.
However, June 2010, I
contacted FMA UK to find the nearest support group and was told the
nearest was in Calne. I was actually more interested in finding
support and information for my then partner, as he found
Fibromyalgia harder to live with than I did. I was encouraged and
assisted by FMA UK to start the group and Foggys was born.
16th August 2010 ~ I
sat nervously, in the small hall of Liden Community Centre, Swindon,
hoping someone will turn up to Foggys 1st EVER MEETING !! I can
still remember myself saying to my then partner, “I hope people turn
up”. An hour later, nerves gone, as 50ish Fibromyalgia sufferers and
loved ones turn up and Foggys was officially born. At one point we
thought we'd be out of the door, as we had to keep moving to make
room. Sounds scary? that amount of people, no !! it was brilliant.
Relaxed atmosphere, few tears, lots of laughs.
We've tried different
venues and times over the years, however, Liden 12 - 2 first
Wednesday of the month has always proved the most popular. We’re
currently not meeting due to Covid 19. We hope to start them again
in September 2020. In the mean-time, we’re holding zoom meetings,
just to catch up with each other.
When not in lockdown,
we try to arrange meals out, subsidised by Foggys (depending on
funds) as many of us aren't normally able to socialise. It's lovely
to be out with like-minded people, with similar disabilities, and
From 7th July 2014,
Foggys (paid) members could take advantage of FREE swim sessions at
Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool. (Currently not happening due to
From of 31st July
2017, we were able to increase this to 2 sessions. Paid members are
welcome to attend both, space allowing. (Currently not happening due
Primarily setup as
Fibromyalgia Support, we now provide support primarily for Arthritic
/ Rheumatic Condition's, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Chronic
Widespread Pain, Fibromyalgia, M. E. Myalgic Encephalopathy and
Myofascial Pain and where possible other "invisible illnesses". As
we tell people who contact us, please try to come to a meeting, you
might be shy and/or anxious, but you shouldn't suffer alone !!
.. and we understand.
Sadly, due to
lockdown and coronavirus, like many people we’ve missed our
birthday, 29th June 2020, but we’re still here waiting for when we
can meet up again, and celebrate with tea/coffee and cake .. or
maybe even a subsidised meal for our members.
I can’t believe that
we’re 10 years old ! Thank you to everyone who has passed through
and to those who we still see.