Ever since the big 7.8M quake two weeks ago, I constantly feel as if the earth is moving. I'd check Geonet and find that the aftershocks were listed as weak or unnoticeable. So why on earth did I think there was an earthquake?
Then I read an article on phantom earthquakes, which is apparently a very real PSTD condition. Phantom quakes describes the frightening phenomenon that occurs when earthquakes throw people's equilibrium into disarray. People experiencing phantom earthquakes feel like the earth is moving, even though it's perfectly still - like being on a boat.
Doctors say the ear recovers its sense of equilibrium reasonably quickly -- and as aftershocks die down, so does the emotional toll. I'm feeling very stressed and not sleeping well, which means I'm feeling exhausted most of the time. Strangely enough, when there has been a noticeable aftershock, I'm not feeling them!
Experts say we may also be feeling very low-frequency sound waves which may/may not be registering as after-shocks. Some folks seem to be more sensitive to them. Read more here about that..
So it's all in my head, but also in my ear; the delicacy of the ear means it doesn't take much to throw it out of whack. It's a pretty dreadful thing that feels like adding insult to injury!
I'll freely admit that I have never been so scared in my life when the quake hit, and I've been feeling that way ever since, despite having grown up in New Zealand and felt quakes all my life. This was the biggest and scariest one I've ever felt and I'm worried and scared, waiting for another big one.