Rheumatoid Arthritis, i.e. Rheumatoid Disease, can really screw up your plans. My plan was to complete Word Press Blogging 101, organize my research methods, improve my writing skills and write daily.
Then the fatigue sets in. Low grade temperature, swelling feet, ankles, hands and wrists, neck. Pain saturated every joint in my body including my jaw. I became a slow moving zombie, too sick to become depressed. Life came to a grinding halt. Too nauseated to eat, but not losing an ounce. Damn it! I could see myself in that wheel chair and I just didn’t want to go there.
My focus became surviving. I am on a schedule of tramadol and gabapentin. I am on prednisone. I could increase it, but hate to. More sleeplessness. I am on methotrexate injections, Plaquenil, and meloxicam plus the sister medications taken for the side effects.
I understand better than I ever had before that I have few options left.
I am heading for the slippery slope. Scary thought. My rheumatologist has given me most of what she had. Next is Orencia and if that doesn’t work, we will try the TNF inhibitors. She said, at this point quality of life trumps increased cancer risk. I agree. So we will try.
I think she wished she had started the biologics sooner. She had followed protocol and the advice of my oncologist. She had done the right thing. No one would have guessed my RD would have progressed at the rate it did. I am RF negative. I have joint damage in my feet and in my ankles (20% of those with RD have ankle involvement. Lucky me.) I have damaged joints in my hands and in my wrists, especially my right. My right shoulder is not good and my left hip is starting to speak up. My neck has deteriorated.
I realized my health depended on me as well as the meds I was on. I knew this already. I know it better now. I am feeling better. Pain in check. Everything still swollen, but that is me. Intellectually, I am better. Motivated to write. Feels good to do it.
That is my sorry excuse for not writing for the last few months. Hope my next excuse is a lot more fun.