The Fibromyalgia Detective!!
It started with a stiff neck the first morning, which felt curious as I had gone to bed the night before feeling great. I woke up to finding my neck muscles were back to the very ooolllllddddddd rock hard stiffness. I could move my head, with limited range of motion, but it was pretty painful! Definitely not functioning at 100%.
Next morning: I woke up feeling like my bed was a rock. Yes, literally like I was sleeping on concrete. My entire upper back was now rock hard, the muscles pinching the nerves and tendons! Owwww!!!! But I had work to do, and this situation that reminded me of of my past years of living with fibromyalgia COULD NOT be repeating itself! "You are fine!" I told myself. I remembered Firm Cream from Mannatech, and how it has helped me with this pain for 19 years. I rub some my shoulders. After a few minutes, the pain subsided, but the stiffness was still there. I made it through the day, making the choice to sleep on my comfy leather, cloud-like sofa that night. I went to bed way too late, though. Like, 2am way too late!
My sofa is amazing for sleeping, which I know is hard to believe since most sofa sleeping is incredibly uncomfortable. I woke up okay, still stiff neck but not bad, going about my day. OH, MY GOODNESS! Half-way through it's worse, moving down my spine, effecting my whole upper back! The pain and stiffness are okay while I am sitting or laying nearly motionless, but by the night, my entire body is hurting! I GROAN internally when I have to get up. DARN! Why me?!!!! Why again?!!! Why, when I usually am fine; over it; no more of this craziness?!!!
The next day was worse. The old 'truck ran over me in the night' thoughts rushed through my head as I woke up. Owww! Double Owwwwwww! I can't move! Even my tummy muscles hurt! The old trigger points are there. I have them memorized from long ago when you had to send for papers in the mail to see how fibromyalgia is diagnosed. I felt more and more like I couldn't move, but I knew, from way too much experience, I could move. I did, slowly.
"I definitely have to take care of this! I have to stop pushing so hard and do self-care until I am better again!" I told myself internally.
If you or a loved one have fibromyalgia, I REALLY want you to notice what I just wrote, 'UNTIL I AM BETTER AGAIN!'. This is the hope I am holding out to you like a lifeline. You CAN get better, just the way I did after years of suffering and waking up with these moments pretty much every single day!
Just like I will get better again!
Let me show you how to experiment, but first, I want to explore the probable WHYS of the pain resurfacing for me right now, after feeling good for months!
How to be a Fibromyalgia Detective!!
When you are first hit with the Pain and Fatigue of Fibromyalgia, it feels UNBELIEVABLE! It CANNOT be happening to you! It feels like it hit you out of the blue; no rhyme or reason.
The medical establishment doesn't help, either. They are finally studying, taking forever, and just cannot understand it; used to be so bad they believed it was all in your head!
Over time, I realized that SOMETHING was causing this! I had to be my own personal advocate, experimenter, and figure-outer, for lack of a better term.
The following possibilities as to the 'why' are what I came up with for the current fibromyalgic episode (see above):
Toxins--Specifically hair dye toxins. AND, you are talking to the girl who only uses the 'natural' kind! I dyed my hair on Monday or Tuesday. The stiffness started on Wednesday. Do I see a correlation? Yes. Have I seen it before? Yes. Do I like the correlation? No. I like keeping my hair dyed. Have to figure this one out further!
Stress in any form--I stressed my body by pushing to get every goal of the day done on Thursday, staying up until 2am! I gently ask myself, "Are you serious?! Don't you think you are past this stage of life?!". Apparently not. Staying up late is a known trigger for Epstein Bar, or Mono, and many, if not all of us with fibro/fatigue have that virus lurking.
Emotional Component--By studying Kinesiology, I have come to realize that every disease has an emotional piece; a mind-body connection that creates our own reality. Did my body conjure up this Fibromyalgic episode out of hurt emotions from difficult family relationships? Or, did I feel like I HAD to remember what it was like to wake up in pain and exhaustion for over 25 years?
My mind is well aware of the underlying belief in the fibro/fatigue community that the problem is incurable; that if a way is found out of the mire and muck of these issues, the problem was not really fibromyalgia in the first place! Maybe my body had to PROVE it's predisposition really used to be THAT, even though I am better now!
Viruses and Faulty Immune System Regulation--I could have got one of the flu viruses that are going around. There is an element in Fibromyalgia that is exactly like getting the flu, only this unwelcome viral guest stays in your body waaaaayyyy too long! Epstein Bar Virus, sometimes called Mono, is a member of the Herpes family of viruses and one of the biggest culprets, When your body is attacked by any other virus or bacteria, like the common cold or the prevalent flu that is going around, your immune system is overwhelmed by overload of invaders. Epstein Bar Virus rises up, along with the other virus or bacteria and hits you with a double wammy! Extreme fatigue and body aches that can sometimes go on and on.
EMF exposure--This last week, I was working on several major computer projects. In the past, I have had extreme sensitivity to Cell Phones, Computers, Smart Meters, and Wi-Fi, to the point that I avoided use, but have recently found ways of protecting myself so the effects of the Electro-Magnetic Frequencies do not bother me as much. However, there is still some leak through of the EMF's. That alone can make me feel nausea, headachy, like my brain is not functioning right, and fatigued.
Shock--I mean of the electrical variety. This is embarrassing (and scarry!), but last night I pulled out a flat plug from one of the kitchen sockets by putting my fingers underneath the plug at the outlet and pulling; only, my fingers were wet because I had just been washing the dishes! I felt a sudden shock in my left hand fingers (Duh!)! After that, my body was even more overwhelmed and fatigued than it had been before and my body and brain felt, well, shocked!
Ergonomics--Fibromyalgia sufferers know about positioning your body so the least amount of stress is on trigger points, and to not create injury. You DO NOT reach around the seat in your vehicle and try to pick up your heavy purse, using your arm in a backward manner (Done that!)! Well, my laptop was sitting on a high desk, and I was typing on and on with my hands sort of up and over this desk. In other words, my chair was too low! The entire arrangement was fine for awhile, but later I felt the stress points tighten up and start to become sore! All that typing was repetitive motion, too! When I woke up the next morning so stiff and sore, I went looking around for a kinder solution and found a stool that can be raised up to the proper height. Voila! Much better going forward!
Detox--Feeling low level nausea is not always bad, from the perspective of your body, which could be detoxing itself from Chemical and EMF overload. However, it is bad from the perspective of how you feel! I personally LOVE to feel good all the time, and detox symptoms are not fun!
Food sensitivities--The last few days I ate a wonderful green salad my daughter made that had raw garlic. I happen to love garlic; my body does not. I have also made a fresh lime drink, something I do not normally eat. The Fibro detective in me wonders if these foods were a layer in making me crash?
Supplements--I would not rule out the possibility that one of the supplements I am taking could cause problems. I put this at the bottom of my list because I have used most of the supplements I currently have for quite awhile, testing and re-testing with only positive responses; however, the possibility exists that they are a layer of either causing my body to react, or in causing my body to detox; this is a level of simply being aware.