I went 300 days without a flare and on day 301 I went back to zero. I got lulled into this false sense of security that I was on a new medication and perhaps my flares were over. I need to remember it is not a matter of “If, but when” and be ready for them. If they come once a year that is far better than every 60-90 days. I have hope that I can get more than 300 days next time. So, everyone asks me what can I do differently or what brought this flare on and what can I do next time. My husband and I are in the middle of selling our house and building a new one. We are doing this to be closer to family, to shorten our commutes and to make the quality of our lives better in our “middle years” but the stress that surrounds this endeavor is overwhelming and stressful to say the least. I’m not 20 building a house like I was the first time I did this and I also didn’t have MCTD the first time I built a house so I knew this year in general was going to wear me down.
Friday night we were sitting on the couch talking and discussing our plans for the weekend and I started to smell gas. My husband said well you are going to flare so we have to rethink the plans for the weekend. He reminded me that I smelled gas the last time I had a flare. I had to look back in my journal and sure enough at day 285 I smelled gas and flared the next day taking me back to zero. Smelling gas is a sign so now I know what to look for but what I do about it I’m still unsure.
I woke up Saturday morning and thought I feel ok and went to teach my yoga class thinking I had either beat the flare or it would come on Sunday. I got to class and in the warm-up my body started to stiffen, and the shakes came and the sore throat was so severe. I had 60 minutes to finish this class get in my car and home to bed. I finished my class, called my husband and he got the heating pad ready, fluids ready and was there to greet me to take me to bed. The fever came on and the pain was so unbearable. I ended up finally falling asleep and sleeping soundly for several hours. When I woke I felt mildly better but still as though I was hit by a huge truck. The rest of the day was spent drinking fluids and falling in and out of sleep.
However, Sunday I woke up as though nothing had even happened so I was back to day 1 and went to my yoga class to teach a full on class with no worries. I did take it easy the rest of the day to ensure that truly got my strength back but I felt so much better. Today I am back to my exercise routine and back to eating lots of food again and feeling great. Now my job is to take the next 300 days to research and see what I can do when I smell gas to try and either prolong the flare or just not have a flare. I don’t exactly know where to start but I have some time to figure it out.