Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Exciting, New Flavors of Pain

First off, I'm happy to report that my bout of food poisoning has finally subsided.  :)

After being in constant and varying Fibromyalgia (FMS) & Chronic Myofascial (CMP) pain for almost 5 years now, I'm surprised to find that I'm still experiencing some new, unfamiliar pains.

Having declared (only recently) that I have finally graduated to the final stage of grief - acceptance of my chronic illnesses - I thought I'd figured out how my new, broken body works to some degree. Sure, it's still unpredictable, but understanding the unpredictability kind of helps it be more predictably unpredictable. Words fail me, but I hope you know what I mean. Come to think of it, since Fibro Fog is part of the new me, perhaps these pains aren't really new. Perhaps they are just pains I've had but don't recognize this time around. Perhaps I'd experienced these pains earlier, but I was too new at this chronic illness thing and didn't quite understand what it was. Heck, I'm not sure now, but I have a hunch it's got something to do with FMS or CMP.

At any rate, I'll try to describe how these weird pains feel...

Last night, I was sitting on the couch with Don, enjoying some evening TV. Suddenly, out of nowhere, my lower left pelvic region felt like shards of glass were trying to break through my abdomen to run around the house, screaming. It was abrupt and made me "ow!" out loud, confusing Don as to what he might have done this time. I reassured him that it was nothing he'd done and felt it again. It was odd. I was happy to find that it settled back in and left me alone for the rest of of the night.

Today, I started my day feeling like I'd been run over by a Mack truck, but I still don't know why. I slept, dreamt, and don't remember exerting myself too much lately. (Although who knows what my thresholds are these days?) Eventually, I crawled into the shower and spent far too long trying to make the peppermint Dr. Bronner's soap wake me up or something, I guess. I got ready and drove myself to work. Getting out of the car was challenging, after having stiffened up during the drive (about a half-hour). I walked toward the building feeling sore in every last muscle from my butt down. Interesting, but nothing too unusual. Soreness is a fact of life for me now, even when I don't know exactly what I did to earn it. A few hours later, though, after going about my business at the office, I noticed my neck and shoulders got extremely tight and sore. My back hurts a little oddly too. It's like some package of misfortune has descended upon my upper body. What the heck? I try not to take too many as-needed meds if I can help it, but this seemed to warrant a muscle relaxant.

I'm still experiencing this high-level and sudden shoulder/neck stiffness and pain right now, and the legs are still sore when I walk. What happened? Was it something I did? More importantly, what's next??

I'm due for a vacation soon. Don has become wary of planning excursions with me lately, since he never knows if I'll be up to enjoying things with him, or if he'll end up having to try to enjoy something without me. I am convinced that if I am "on vacation" and not worrying about the usual stuff, my body will be more cooperative and let me have some fun without making me crash. I definitely won't be running marathons or anything crazy, but I think being pleasantly distracted helps keep stress levels down, which in turn, helps to keep my body processing working a little better than usual.

Cross your fingers for me!