I’m currently in the middle of a particularly severe fibromyalgia flare up and want to share what it’s like since it’s a different feeling than regular fibromyalgia. I could feel it starting on Tuesday after annunuusllhnfibrnm an unusually active weekend. I started to ache and it felt like the beginning of the flu. I tried to minimize the severity by taking time off work and meditating (and medicating), but this time it didn’t help. Usually it does help to make it milder.
I haven’t slept since Tuesday night. It’s now Friday morning and my body has reached a state of pure exhaustion. I’ve been having hallucinations, both visual and auditory. Luckily I’ve had enough experience with them over the years to immediately recognize what’s happening and recognize that it’s not real amdtjerdognmmmmmmmdkrnf and therefore nothing to be afraid of. I’ve been involuntarily passing out since about midnight. I stay unconscious for a few minutes and then wake up. It’s the closest I can come to sleep.
You’ll notice nonsensicle strands of letters in this essay. I’ve left them in on purpose. If I don’t focus every last bit oglggggle of energy I have on writing a coherent thought, that’s what my brain comes up with. No matter what I do, I just can’t make my brain say what I want it to say. Even the simplest words are just out of reach. It’s not unusual for me to text someone complete gibberish during a flare up, forget I had done so, and then look back when I’m feeling better in complete and utter embarrassment. Speaking of embarrassment, not only does fibro fog mess with my ability to communicate during a flare, it ruins my almost non-existent memory even more. I walked out of my house to meet the pizza delivery guy completely topless because Imforfkekd I forgot I had taken my shirt off earlier. Ooops doesn’t begin to describe that.
Tlllllff Snapchat sent to a friend. No idea what I was trying to say.
The dangerous part of flare ups is that my central nervous system starts acting a little fuckey. I can only see out of one eye, I get terrible migraines, and worst of all, I lose my balance and fall a lot. This is way TMI, but I have trouble peeing. Somewhere between brain and bladder something gets messed up and it’s an incredibly painful process.
Then there’s the pain. There’s always the pain. In addition to the normal bone rattling crap I feel on a daily basis, during a flare up I get to experience new flavours of hell. My skin feels like it shrunk 3 sizes and is threatening to rip open at any moment. It also feels like I am covered in creepy crawly bitey bugs, and I’ve scratched until I’ve drawn blood in multiple spots. My neck feels like someone was trying tomnekwkkekrkeke tolkremm to nail my head down into my shoulders. EVERYTHING itches. There is no relief.
This is what a fibromyalgia flare up looks like to me. They’re all different. This one is more irritating than painful, and should be over in a day or two. Some cause pain so bad I lose consciousness, and some last for weeks. I can never tell what I’m going to get, but luckily the treatment is always the same: lots of rest and minimal activity until the worst of the symptoms subside.