Fibromyalgia: she arrives in Marseille after 6,000 km of walking

From Normandy, via Portugal and Spain, Violette Duval traveled 6,000 km to raise awareness about fibromyalgia, a suffering disease that is little talked about. An evil which nevertheless affects two million people in France. Marseille marks the end of its journey.

Violet, this Friday, for her penultimate stage, at the Crown.
Violet, this Friday, for her penultimate stage, at the Crown. • © Photo VD

Violette Duval ends a great adventure: that of a long walk of 6,000 km, a real feat to draw attention to fibromyalgia.

This “invisible” disease, which leaves no trace of inflammation or injury, causes permanent pain.

“Faced with this unbearable pain, many end up in depression. Some even commit suicide, ” explains Violette Duval, herself suffering from the disease.

It was at the age of 14 that the first symptoms of fibromyalgia appeared in the young Norman.

The young Violette discovers intense pains which assail her body, her hands, her feet. She suffers from headaches. Has trouble sleeping. 

With his stroller, his only "baggage"
With his stroller, his only “baggage” • © Photo VD

This gives even more credit to his achievement . It has been over a year since the 35-year-old left Normandy, where she is from.

She had decided to join Marseille, via Portugal and Spain. As luggage, a stroller filled with necessary items.

But confinement stopped her just two weeks before her planned arrival in Marseille last April.

“I returned for two and a half months with my parents in Normandy. It was a little frustrating, but it allowed me to move forward, and to find a job for the future”, she says with optimism. .

Since June 5, the adventurer has taken to the road, more motivated than ever.

I gave a lot and I received a lot.

Violette Duval, fibromyalgia

On her journey, many patients come to join her to accompany her a bit of the journey. A way of sharing what brings them together.

“For all of us who have this disease, it is always the same story: we are not heard. We are told that the problem is shrink, that it is in our head. I think it is important to do actions to denounce this. “

If we ask Violette what are the most beautiful memories of this trip, she replies: “It is all the generosity that this project has generated. I gave a lot and I received a lot.”

The stroller, the companion of a 6000 km journey
The stroller, a companion of a 6000 km journey • © Photo VD

Because on her way, Violette was often encouraged “by smiles, sympathetic honking, coffee breaks, shared meals and aperitifs”.

There were dangerous times, like in the tunnels.

Violet Duval, fibromyalgia

But any adventure also has its difficulties. The worst moments for the young woman are linked to the road and its dangers:

“I had problems in Andalusia. I almost got run over. I was not always comfortable on the roads. There were dangerous moments, like in the tunnels. There are not too many cycle paths in Europe. The walking conditions were sometimes very risky. “

But the bad memories are already fading as the final stage approaches.

Saturday, Violette will leave Estaque at 2 pm to reach the heart of Marseille, the shade house of the Old Port. The young woman is expected there between 4:30 pm and 5 pm For the end of her trip, she hopes to bring people together.

The presence of the media means a lot to her. Because the goal of his project is to alert the Ministry of Health to the problem of this “invisible” disease.

A large part of the course took place by the sea or the ocean
A large part of the course took place by the sea or the ocean • © Photo VD

“It’s complicated to get things done. The action I have taken is super positive for me. But the outright recognition of this disease does not depend on me. I wish to draw the attention of the Minister of Health, and get an appointment.”

An appointment to remember that 3% of the population suffers from a disease that goes unnoticed . To ask for funding so that research is genuinely interested in the cause of this evil.

So that finally, this feat of 6,000 km not only remains symbolic, but leads to a political decision on health.

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