The intensity and combination of my symptoms vary from day to day and are generally unpredictable in nature. Long ongoing periods of these symptoms are called an attack or episode. The term “attack” is far too violent for me, conjuring up images of me battling a tiger in a Roman-era gladiator arena wearing one of those neat studded leather skirts and metal breastplate rather than simply staggering down a hallway and running into a door because I happen to be wearing 2” heels on the wrong day. Episode, however, has sitcom overtones where goofy thirty something Friends find great humor in things such as getting a raw turkey stuck on one’s head or the naked guy. So for the sake of my own mental imagery, I prefer to call these periods an episode.

Here are a few fun facts: Until very recently, I experienced several days or weeks between episodes with only a feeling of pressure and mild dizziness in between. The shortest episode I have experienced to date is 48 hours; the longest has been six continuous weeks. The longest period out of an episode is 3 months and the shortest period between episodes has been 21 hours (forty-eight minutes and twenty-nine seconds, but who’s counting right?).