• Beth Matthews

Perspectives of Fibro | Part Five

I have conducted a series of interviews exploring different perspectives of Fibromyalgia. From carers to business owners to friends of people with the condition.

The inspiration behind this was seeing how different everyone’s Fibro journey is, no one with this condition experiences the same thing. With Fibromyalgia already being a very misunderstood and unbelieved condition, these interviews are designed to show the many complex sides of the condition and the effects it can have on people living with it, and the people supporting them.

This Week I interviewed Jade at Apatura by M.C.C who creates lines of clothing specifically for chronically ill people and people who need to focus on comfortable fits and materials. Clothing isn’t the first thing I thought of adjusting when I was diagnosed but I have come to realise the clothes I wear can make or break my day and it is incredibly important to feel comfortable and supported by the things you put on your body. Check out their line here:

Hi Jade, could you tell me a little bit about yourself and your journey with Fibromyalgia?

Hello, my name is Jade, I'm 24years old and was born in Bury, Lancs. I don't have Fibro, but someone close to me does. My Dad met his partner Beki nearly 5 years ago and over time I have got to know Beki and our relationship has really blossomed. I have seen first hand how she lives with Fibro and how deeply it can affect someone's life. Before meeting Beki I was unaware and unsure of what Fibromyalgia was. 5 years later I am still learning new things about Fibromyalgia and how it affects Beki and I wanted to do everything in my power to take away some of the pain and discomfort.

Can you tell me about Apatura? What it stands for, what its goal is etc.

The symbol most associated with Fibromyalgia is the butterfly. This was adopted as the symbol because although a butterfly is light and weightless it could still cause pain if it landed on someone with Fibro, due to their heightened sensitivity to pain and pressure.The name Apatura was chosen because the common symbol for Fibromyalgia is the beautiful purple butterfly. The most beautiful purple butterfly I could find was the Apatura iris, I thought that this was a really meaningful name, and a lovely hidden message, did you guess where I got the name from?

What inspired Apatura? And what does it mean to you, to cater clothing for people with Chronic Illness?

The inspiration for Apatura all started when me and Beki took a trip to find her a dress for a wedding she had in the summer, we thought the best place for it was our local shopping outlet, with over 150 stores to look through it was going to be a long day. Beki was quickly getting frustrated as we had been there for a few hours and we still had no luck in finding something stylish as well as comfortable, Beki told me how it was an ongoing struggle for her to find appropriate clothing to accommodate her symptoms of Fibromyalgia, this really took me aback and I thought how many other people were finding themselves in this position, was there a retailer for them? I put forward my thoughts to Beki and she thought it was a wonderful idea.

What is one thing Fibro has made you grateful for?

I think the one thing Fibro has made me grateful for is the special relationship I have with Beki, it has definitely brought us closer as a family.

Going forward, there is lots more research being done into chronic conditions like Fibro. In five years time, what would you like to see happen?

Motorbikers Cosmetic Company (MCC) run by my Dad, (Mark) and Beki, has an amazing Fibromyalgia support group and I know Beki often mentions getting together in the future like one big family. Of course with Covid restrictions at the moment no plans have yet been made but this will be a definite. I'd be interested to hear other peoples stories and how Fibro affects them in unique ways. I think that the Fibro community is a very special place where you all come together due to shared experience of the chronic illness and can support each other such as in the M.C.C group its lovely to see and be apart of.

Describe Fibro in 5 words.

From the perspective of someone who doesn’t have Fibro I’m going to say the 5 words I think you have






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