I've been asked that question a lot and I've answered it here on this blog a few times. Without looking up each individual post, I've likened the pained feeling to:
1. The early stages of a cold or the flu. The all-over aching and tiredness. That exhausting pain in your muscles that is so tender that the water from taking a shower hurts your skin.
2. Being hit by a truck/thrown from a horse. Same thing- all-over muscle pain, but with varying "hot spots" of more intense pain.
3. Being beaten with a pool noodle. All-over muscle pain and fatigue.
4. Lactic acid overload. That feeling you get when you lift weights and you feel like your muscles can't take any more, they're burning with the exertion.
And all of these things are accompanied with that mind-numbing fatigue that makes you forget things like: "Did I take my pain pills yet?" and "Why did I come into this room?", plus little things like phone numbers and your children's names.
The easiest way to explain it is as follows:
You know that pain you get the morning after you work out after having been lazy for a while. Your entire body hurts. Every muscle is tight and even the slightest physical movement causes the muscles in that area you moved to scream out a symphony of agony. Burning, intense pain that lingers for a few days. Plus, you're so tired because you decided to have a sauna and swim a few laps before leaving that gym. Now you're not only in pain, you're so tired that you keep reading the same line over and over again. Now you're not only in pain, you're so tired that you keep reading the same line over and over again. Now you're not only in pain, you're so tired that you keep... haaaa! I'm such an asshole...
So, have you got that idea in your head? Now, apply that to every single day. That's how I feel every single day. To mix it up, though, every so often my body increases the intensity of the pain- you know, just in case I forgot how good I had it with that all-over pain and fatigue. Sometimes, that intensity crank-up happens all over my body and other times, it happens in a localized area. Favorite hot spots in my case are my hip muscle- so it feels like I have a burning railroad spike being ground into my hip; the shoulder/upper back with the same type of grinding and burning railroad spike; and the hands/wrists/forearms. Those pains can come and go randomly. Some days, I feel as though my wrists have been sprained, only to have them feel fine hours later.
There you have it... how it feels to live with fibro.
And now here's some photos I took of my daughter and her boyfriend today. They were going to a wedding and wanted some nice photos, all dressed up, that weren't iPhone photos.
Kathy and Tyler (shot in their backyard)
Tyler didn't think this shot was going to turn out. But I like it.
Notice- she did not back away, she just braced herself for it.
Tyler wanted a "full body" shot of them in their nice clothes.