thesis: fibromyalgia (fm)
For my thesis project I decided to focus on Fibromyalgia. As I personally have this condition I really wanted to focus on what it’s like to experience these pains and frustrations. I didn’t want to make this condition seem like it was a roadblock in peoples lives - I wanted to show that those who suffer from FM can go on about their daily life with a few adjustments. I decided to go way out of my comfort zone and create a Youtube channel that would be dedicated to showing what living with FM is like and giving insight into the condition through the eyes of a patient. As an extension to this I created 5 post cards each with a different invisible condition. My main goals were to create a dialogue that got people talking and left them informed. As well as to create a community where FM patients and non-patients could talk and support one another.
The concept of creating a Youtube channel originally came to me as a parody idea. I thought it would be hilarious to put on a big personality and sit in front of a camera while throwing shade towards Fibromyalgia. However, the more I thought about what I wanted to include in my videos the more I realized I wanted my videos to be educational, light, and fun. I wanted people who didn’t have Fibromyalgia to get a peak into the life of someone who had to live with the daily struggle of the invisible condition. I also wanted to create a sense of normalization and community for those who have Fibromyalgia. I ended up making a few informative yet light hearted videos that gave a glimpse into my life with Fibromyalgia in hopes of creating a community and showing sufferers that they weren’t along while still being able to inform those who were not aware of the condition.
Definition per Google:
a chronic disorder characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain, fatigue, and tenderness in localized areas.
Definition per me:
You’re in a shit ton of pain all day every day.
Sometimes your body will be nice and you won’t be in as much pain as usual.
Your invisible condition doesn’t control you.
Invisible friend’s post cards
Invisible Friends postcards were inspired by the lack of visibility among conditions that are not always physically seen. These postcards were created to start a dialogue and be shared with friends and loved ones. They feature words of encouragement on the back for the person who receives them. Having Fibromyalgia myself I wanted to create a piece that brought awareness and started a conversation about invisible conditions. I decided to design these as postcards as placing them in envelopes in typical greeting card manner would have further hidden the condition and defeated the goal of creating a dialogue.If you are struggling to cope with an invisible condition please know that you are loved, you are great, and you will overcome this. The invisible condition does not kick your ass - you kick it's ass.