By Cassidy Colbert in The Mighty.
Living life with a chronic illness is basically living life constantly walking on eggshells. One day you may be bouncing off the walls because you are so full of energy and the next you are lying on the cool bathroom floor — your only source of relief from the agonizing pain you are in. This is an example of what we in the chronic illness world call a “flare-up” — and with it can come fear.
As one Mighty contributor wrote, “flare fear” is “the thought of what might happen if you do too much or choose the wrong activity on a good day, ultimately sending you into a spiral of pain and symptoms and sentencing you to weeks in bed.”
When my chronic Lyme disease flares, I tend to go into what I like to call “survivor mode;” I do anything I can to feel better. Sometimes this means doing a detox regimen, while other times I may have to cancel plans. It can be hard for others to comprehend why I am drinking straight turmeric (or “that gross stuff,” as my sister calls it) or why I can’t go see that movie I really wanted to anymore, and it can get pretty discouraging and lonely. A lot of times, what others don’t understand is that during a flare, we are just trying our best to survive.