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Make a Fibro Mask #fibromask to mark the Fibromyalgia Awareness Day and share it with the world!

This year for the Fibromyalgia Awareness Day on the 12th May we encourage you to participate in a fun and creative art therapy activity together with us! Many thanks to our volunteer and an art therapist, Amanda Mckinlay, who inspired us to share this with you and to do our masks, too.

Amanda explains how this works: ‘’The ‘’two sided mask" idea really struck a chord with me with regards to living with fibromyalgia. The idea is that you decorate the mask with one side showing the face you portray to the world & the other showing how you really feel. This hit me as being perfect for fibro because often, to save trying to explain how you feel to someone who won't understand or because you don't know how to put it into words we just put on a happy mask & say "I'm fine" or on the other side of things often people say to us " you look well" when we don't feel it. I'd also seen quite a few mask themed posts on a few fibro themed social media pages & talked to some friends who agreed it'd be a good idea for an awareness project & that's why I contacted the charity.

The idea is simple:
1) either download a mask template from FMA UK website or the internet (www.freefunfings.com/masks/plainmasks has a choice of shapes & styles) or you can get plastic masks to decorate from either your local £1 shop or craft shop.

2) Decorate it any way you like. You can use pens, pencils, crayons, paints, stickers, fabric...anything & you can make it as glamorous & happy or sad, plain & sore looking as you want. It's up to you what face you want to show. PLEASE don't think it has to be a masterpiece... It's about having fun, getting in touch with your "inner child" & getting our fibro faces out there for the world to see! (you could even have fun & get together with your local support group or family & friends who want to show their support and make your masks together).

3) take a photo & upload it to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc.. before or on 12th May using #fibromask in your posts to get fibro trending all over social media. Put them on your own timelines & share them with FMA UK on Facebook (Fibromyalgia Action UK) or Twitter ( @fmauk ) - it gets awareness out there and let's other people with fibro know they're not facing it alone.

Amanda adds: "I've been keen on arts & crafts for years & I've been using creativity as a tool in managing my fibromyalgia pretty much since I was diagnosed. It's my means of escaping from the pain & frustrations this illness hits us with & ,after having to give up my career as a care assistant in an elderly care home, it became my new career path & my new passion.
 I do a combination of hand-sewn/cross stitched pieces, some knitting & textile art work & when a friend asked me to do a craft workshop with the kids in her after school group that led to me doing art workshops. Seeing how therapeutic people found the workshops & knowing how crafting had helped me in my living with fibro I decided to do some study in art therapy.
   I enrolled in a home study art therapy course which covered the history of art being used as a therapy tool covering various experts in psychology including Freud & also explored various tools & " tasks " used by therapists to help clients express & explore various experiences & events. One art therapy task the course mentioned was "the two sided mask" & it really struck a chord with me with regards to living with fibromyalgia.’’   

Download this file (blank face mask.pdf)FibroMask[blank mask for #fibromask awareness event]171 kB

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