I saw this photo floating around Facebook this week. I made a mental note (ha-ha-ha-haaaaaa!) to go back to it so I could share it and whine a little bit. But, like all things I mentally note and not actually note, I forgot about it. So, I did a quick Google search and found it again. I had to make it bigger, though, because it was tiny. And in resizing it, I had to fancy it up a little.
YOU'RE WELCOME. ♦♦♦♦click here to view in a larger size♦♦♦♦
Wow. That's huge. Well, at least you can see it. I made it almost twice the size it was, dragged and dropped it onto a plain black background and added the blue glow before flattening the layers. Not that big a deal, but at least it isn't the poorly cropped thing that it was before.
So, let's talk about this pain, shall we? Of course we shall, that's what my blog is about, isn't it? Yes, I appear to be talking to myself again.
1. Knife-like pain: Yup. I get that mostly in my feet and sometimes in my hip. And it isn't localized in that one spot. It jolts and shoots through that area of the body as though I'm being stabbed- not unlike a knife! See? You know where they got that name then.
2. Hyperalgesia: That's the increased response to painful stimuli. If something hurts you, it hurts me worse. Stub your toe and let out a string of profanities and even get a bit of tears stinging your eyes- and for me, it hurts so bad that I can barely breathe enough to stay alive, much less shout out a string of profanities. Earlier today, I stumbled a bit and ended up scraping my elbow against the corner area of a door frame. And in a normal person's body, that shit hurts. On me, it felt like I'd peeled off a layer of important skin on a lemon zester. There's no mark on my body aside from a slight bit of redness. I'm not missing any layers of skin. But damned if it didn't feel that way.
3. Allodynia: Painful response to an normally innocuous stimuli. And I hate that description. "Innocuous stimuli" makes it sound like something is gently annoying you and then you react to it by shouting swear words and threatening legal action. "Hey, I took the last cookie." "I WILL MURDER YOU AND YOUR FAMILY WHERE YOU SLEEP!!" That's not the proper response. Really.
What it actually is, however, is much worse. Let's say you were in a Facebook poke war with someone and they took it to the real world. OH IT IS ON, JOSEPH! *ahem* Sorry about that. I just know a guy- you see, this guy I know at faire took our poke war to the real world. And he cheated a lot by sneaking up on my deaf side. And don't give me that line that he didn't know I was deaf. I mean, its absolutely true that he didn't know, but still!
Anyway, here is a photo of myself that I took today (wearing my new Damsel in this Dress bodice). I added a little bit to demonstrate how a NORMAL person would feel a typical poke from another human.
See? That's not so bad. You got poked, deal with it. It didn't even hurt, but you felt it.
Now, here's the same photo, with a little bit added to it, to demonstrate how I feel a normal poke from someone's finger. I added some tears as well, because fuckin' ouch, man.
So, this isn't an exact representation, but you get the drift, I'm sure. And I don't feel like this EVERY single day. But I do have days like this. Today is a day like this. I have an all-over ache in my muscles and even the slightest pressure- say from a four pound, black and white cow-print dog with tiny feet- causes a radiating pain wherever she put those tiny paws on me.
[she's a beast!]
4. Parethesia: That's the pins and needles feeling when your foot falls asleep. I don't know why they use the word "numbness" because that implies you can't feel anything. But you know you can- you know the feeling I'm talking about. Pain, tingling agony, and you stand up and try to put weight on it and you almost crumple from the lack of feeling, yet painful agony.
Now, imagine that, randomly happening, for no reason, even when you're using the body part. If I stand up too long or stand in one position too long, my feet do this. My hands do it too- like if I'm holding something (like a camera or a large fancy basket with a camera in it). If anyone has seen me taking photos at the joust, you'd have witnessed me shifting my weight a lot or even holding onto the rail for stability. What you can't see under my long skirts is that I'm standing on one foot and shaking out the other foot.
5. Randomly Roving Pain: Well, they were sure thinkin' fancy when they named that pain, weren't they? But yes, I get this too. I refer to it as "hot spot" pain or "My hot spots are flaring". Sometimes I feel in my hip muscle, sometimes in my foot. It seems to happen to me in the larger muscles than in a smaller muscle. Like the hip or thigh and the shoulder muscle. I also sometimes get what feels like a sprain in my wrist and that can last for an hour or it can last for days. And during that time, there's no swelling, there's no bruising, but I have no strength in my wrists and hands just like I've had an actual sprain.
6. Sparkler Burns: Have you ever been burned by a sparkler? Me either, so I don't know why they called this pain that term. I bet it hurts a lot, no matter what chronic pain disease you have or don't have. But this is the painful tingly sensation that when it gets scratched or touched, it can trigger that pesky allodynia pain. In me, that would be the itching/burning skin thing that I refer to as a million hairy-legged spiders all trying to break-dance out through my pores. I hate that shit.
7. Rattled Nerves: This one is an all-over sort of thing, related to anxiety. I am very, very fortunate not to suffer from depression or anxiety, so I don't usually have this problem. I do have times when I'm all-over-body-aching and I feel as though I'm coming down with the flu, but it doesn't cause me any mental distress like the description implies. I have bouts where I'm short-tempered for seemingly no reason and instead of merely answering a question, I bark out an angry, profanity-laced reply that required no hostility on my part. (If I've done that to you, I apologize).
So, there you have it... the seven kinds of pain with some infographics added for fun. This goes sort of with the post I did a couple weeks ago where I state that I am "always in some kind of pain". And that little infographic at the top doesn't even touch on the fatigue that kicks us in the face and wrestles us to the ground. That shit is totally bogus. *feathered hair flip* Totally, dudes.
Right now, as I type this, I've had my nightly Vicodin (three 5/325 mg tablets) and muscle relaxers (two 10 mg tablets of Cyclobenzaprine). And my hands have that Parenthesia thing going on, my right shoulder is having a bit of a flareup from that "roving" pain, and both arms and hands are doing the millions of spiders thing. The good news is that all those pain meds I've taken make me not care. And in a couple hours, I'll be blissfully asleep.
At least, I hope to be. I have to drive down to Rockford tomorrow and shoot some product photos again.