I’m kind of bored of explaining, so instead when people ask why my hands look weird, I’m just going to direct them here.
I have Reynaud’s. It’s not contagious.
Basically, with Reynaud’s, if you imagine that your veins are about 1mm wide, and your blood cells are also 1mm wide, but when you get cold, or the outside temperature drops below double figures, your veins shrink to 0.5mm wide, but your blood cells don’t. That’s the basic, layman’s description of Reynaud’s, without getting into annoying and drawn out biological science. That is a technically incorrect, but easier way of explaining. I have to point out now, the picture is not my hands, because I can’t use my hands when they get like that, even with old phones they didn’t work.
With Reynaud’s, when it flares up, your hands and feet, all extremities go numb, completely and utterly, and when you try to use them for anything at all, you flail and flap at the task like a penguin trying to knit. But add to that the fact that all your nerves are very much awake, and are very confused by the lack of blood around them, so they react the only way they know how: By letting you know that you’re probably in pain. When you touch something, they get worse.
You can’t wear full finger gloves with Reynaud’s; anything that puts pressure on your hands forces the blood out quicker. Cue horrible pain. You can wear fingerless gloves, these strangely do quite a lot to keep your hands warmer, but mittens are best. Big fleecy things, lined with lambs wool and coated with calfskin and leather. Wonderful, or I have a very nice pair of heated gloves. The problem with the technology of them is that they closer resemble those ski style gloves people insist on putting their three year olds in. You know the ones. Bulky great lumps with all the dexterity of month old road kill.
As you can imagine, very few employers want to see their staff in bulky mittens, especially not undertakers. They prefer leather gloves, which I can’t wear. But they’re nice enough to keep telling me they’ve found cheap ones somewhere, despite me keep replying everytime I can’t wear them.
So, in summation, I can’t wear gloves, cold weather physically hurts me, I can’t leave the country all winter. Or autumn. Or spring. It’s not contagious, and please, stop telling me you have Reynaud’s, it’s possible you do, but in fairness, you have spent 3 hours sat outside the pub, in the cold, drinking wine and not moving, of course your damn hands are cold. Are they black or blue? No? Then shut up and stop hogging the heat lamp, I want a cigarette. I’m aware that smoking doesn’t help, thank you for that input.
That being said, merry Christmas, Hanukah, Yule, Solstice, Kwanza, December or whatever you may celebrate!