With various autoimmune diseases when things get worse we call it a flare. You might have heard MS warrior Selma Blair refer to it as exasperation. It doesn’t matter what we call it, the toll it takes on us is the same.
Our bodies begin to attack themselves. It could be MS, Parkinson’s, Lupus, vasculitis, fibromyalgia or diabetes, just to name a few. For many of these flares include extreme fatigue, brain fog, pain, insomnia, depression and more.
The fatigue is more than just being tired, it is sleeping 20 hours a day and barely being able to function. This was me the past few weeks.
Brain fog, for me and many others it’s not just forgetting a few things, it’s literally forgetting words. My memory draws blanks, I can’t form words or even think of the word I need. I definitely can’t remember anything.
For me pain typically starts in my feet, with a burning sensation. My feet literally feel on fire. It hurts to walk, to have anything touch them. Then various joints, tendons and even muscles start to hurt.
Now I’m in a stage of insomnia, but don’t think all the other symptoms have gone away. They are still here and increasing. All I want to do is sleep, but I can’t. Every move hurts, and I can’t get comfortable no matter what.
One thing about people with autoimmune diseases, we frequently hide how we feel. So to see us, you might just think we are moving a little slower, but you’d never guess every step is excruciating. It’s our lives and we learn to live with the ups and downs. We don’t give up and are stronger than you know. We are fighters.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, we never know what someone else is going through. So be kind, be patient, and show love. The person taking a little longer to order a coffee might be just trying to live their best life.