Flare jokes

Yesterday I made a joke in a fb status about camping out on the couch with pillows, oatmeal, and a movie because of fibro, how it was "the life!", and how I should have flares more often.

That was a bad move, because apparently Life was listening and was only to happy to oblige. ;)

This morning I woke up bright and early to get some blood drawn for tests and then get my abdominal ultrasound done. I had been fasting since midnight last night, which wasn't a big deal since I wasn't hungry when I woke up anyway. (Finally, appetite fluctuations are on my side!)

Since I was fasting, I didn't take any of my meds, either, since I figured that I wasn't supposed to have anything in my system (except for the half glass of juice I drank to keep my blood sugar from totally tanking). That means that I was completely pain med free when I laid down on the table and had the warm goop smeared all over my belly. The ultrasound itself wasn't bad, but I quickly discovered trigger points I didn't know I had as the ultrasound wand dug into my skin and passed over the same tender points again and again. I didn't bother saying anything, as I knew there was nothing anyone could do about the fact that this innocuous procedure was, in fact, causing me pain. It's just my body, overreacting as usual. :)

The doctor ordered ultrasounds of my gallbladder, spleen, liver, kidneys, and two major arteries of my heart, so it took about half an hour to get all those pictures. I was already feeling pain about five minutes in, but it wasn't much more than a general ache by the time I left. After yoga class, however, I noticed that the pain was intensifying quickly, and I made my way home as fast as I could. Despite my efforts, I was in a pretty desperate state when I got home, wanting nothing more than for the painkiller I'd taken to kick in and to be able to lay down with my heating pad. My entire torso, especially my ribcage, ached and throbbed, and it hurt to breathe. My shoulders had already been hurting, but now they were starting to really throb. Fortunately, my knees and hips didn't feel like getting into the action much more than a few mild protests, but that was inconsequential in the face of the howls and groans coming from my upper body.

So although I had already been planning to spend the evening resting, now it's an enforced bed rest. I haven't done much more than go to the bathroom, scrounge up some food, and shift my pillows around... but not too much, because it hurts to lift a pillow.

I am pleased, though, that I was very aware of my limits during yoga, and I did not push myself over the edge. Well... I thought I hadn't pushed myself over the edge. Hehe. Guess you never really know, huh? Okay, I didn't push myself over the edge in regards to energy levels, how's that? The pain was a blindsiding surprise, but I took it into account and didn't force myself beyond what my body was telling me it could handle. Go me!

I ran across this little podcast/radio show thing on one of the fibro pages that I follow, and I listened to the whole thing. It's got a lot of good info in there, but what impressed me the most was how awesome I and others are for living in and with chronic pain. I mean, we literally have to think about every single detail of our lives and how it will affect us. Maybe I have to even more than others, because I have to plan ahead when it comes to food, not just activities, accessibility, and pain/energy levels. Anyway, we're pretty badass. I really like that the lady who hosts it is a sufferer of severe fibromyalgia, so she's speaking directly from experience. She knows.

I really liked something the host said toward the end. It was in the context of motherhood, as she's a single mom of a five year old (yikes! That must be so hard!), and she realized that she couldn't be active with him and play with him and stuff. Instead of focusing on what she couldn't do, she focused on what she could do, and she and her son have a very special, unique relationship. I really liked that point. Yes, I've lost a lot in my life lately. There are so many things that I can no longer do, and I'm sad. Really sad. I miss hiking and backpacking and cleaning my house. I miss spur-of-the-moment activities and afternoon shopping trips. I miss being able to massage people.

However, I still have so much to offer the world! Instead of focusing on what I can't do anymore, I want to make the effort to focus on what I can do and develop those gifts and talents.

Anyway, here's the episode of The Flare where she talks about tips and tricks to make life with fibromyalgia easier. I shared it with Mom, because she's one of my biggest fans, and I know that she wants to understand and to make my life easier. I saw that in a big way when I was home for Christmas. I figure if we both have the information, then we can both take it and improve on it... and then she knows better how to relate to me, what kind of gifts to get me in the future, etc. I think that sharing a glimpse into the life of a fibromite will help someone without it figure out how to relate to the person with the illness. 'Cause really, when someone's all sick, you feel awkward and don't know what to do, right? I know I do. If I were friends with myself, I wouldn't even want to touch me for fear of hurting me! (Eh, does that last sentence make any sense? My brain is kinda discombobulated right now...) So if I can shed a little light and understanding into that, then my job here is done. (Maybe.)

Oh, good news! After cuddling with my heating pad for a few hours, it doesn't hurt as much to breathe :) My guts sure are getting in on the action, though! I tell ya, if it's not one thing, it's another! Ah, well. --insert something optimistic and philosophical here--

I'm going to go mindlessly surf for decorations for my new house on the interwebs. Peace.

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