5 things my first pain flare in over a year is telling me
I don’t remember the exact date, I don’t think you ever do with these things, but at some point in the last 4-6 months , I stopped considering myself to have fibromyalgia.
I was no longer on pain medication.
I was no longer in pain.
I was no longer constantly worried about something causing the pain to come back.
These facts led me to drop the fibromyalgia part out my diagnoses list and, more importantly, out my identity.
There was no big celebration. Nothing much changed. It just happened one day.
Fast forward to today.
I’m in a pain flare. My first in over a year.
Something happened at my part time job on Monday that caused it. Yes, it could have been easily prevented (by someone else, not me), but that’s besides the point right now.
I’m in pain.
I forgot what this feels like.
It really sucks, doesn’t it?
But, instead of getting stuck in the sucky place of a flare of unspecified length, I’m challenging myself to see the positives and what I can learn from this.
- My healthy habits have been slipping. I’ve been eating less optimum foods. I can’t remember the last time I did any proper exercise (beyond a moderate amount of walking). I don’t mediate as much. Caffeine intake has crept up. There’s a direct correlation between healthy habits and my health and happiness. I need to readjust the balance.
- I’ve been forced to slow down and prioritise my limited energy and cope. I’ve been taking on an ever increasing amount of ‘stuff’ recently (2 part time jobs, School Experience Days to support my teacher training application, The Pillow Fort, etc). I had a string of aches, pains and illnesses before Christmas. I think my body is just trying to get me to slow down and reassess.
- I’ve renewed motivation to create things for The Pillow Fort. This pain flare has reminded me why I started The Pillow Fort. There’s so many of you out there, reading this, experiencing pain and fatigue every single day. I’ve found quite a few techniques and strategies to improve my health, or at the very least, learn to cope better with it. It’s not enough to just be happy that I’m so much better. I need to get sharing that information with you.
- I need to remain vigilant about how I interpret pain and fatigue. It’s a bad week, not a bad life. This is a blip, not a catastrophe for my health. It’s a mini relapse of a dormant pain condition, that’s all. I need to open up my wellbeing toolbox and get to work.
- This is a life long commitment to my health. I first got ill with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome at 16, and then fibromyalgia and depression at 22. 2012 was a dark year for me. It was my wake up call to reassess everything about my life. I’m grateful to have had the wake up call so young. I’m much more balanced and grounded person because of it (well, how I got myself out of it). I cannot rest on my laurels. I need to be making a daily commitment to my health and happiness, otherwise I will slip back to how I was before.
So there you have it. I’m okay. Everything is okay. My body is just having a chat with me, and I’m listening.
What is your body and current health trying to tell you? Let me know in the comments!