All posts tagged: RA attitude

RA Pain, Coping and mother’s advice

  Beginning with the first symptoms of my rheumatoid arthritis (RA), I have lived in daily pain. It has been over four years. It has been a long time. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease. My body is on a suicide mission to destroy the linings of  the movable joints in my body. It is a scary disease in that it is unpredictable and it is progressive. I spent the first two years with severe fatigue/malaise. And it was as bad as the pain. This malaise is caused by cytokines, products of inflammation. Cytokines circulate in my bloodstream spreading RA damage. Add that to a high level of pain and it can be overwhelming. I wake to stiff, painful joints. In the morning as I walk painfully down to the kitchen to make coffee, there are times when I have become angry and tired of it all. I start the day in pain and I end the day in pain. It is too much. My feet are becoming deformed and I find it difficult to …

MY RA Book

  I am making progress! I started writing a book on RA a year ago. I have deep experiences as a patient. I have read extensively. I have written extensively. I have read much about other people living with the challenges of RA.  However, my book is starting to look like a textbook. This is not my intention. Fortunately for me I read a short book on organizing a kindle non-fiction book. It all made sense and I am now ready to go. I plan to have my book up and ready by midsummer. Unfortunately,  my RA is on a steady progressive course. I have tried most of the drugs on the list for RA and only a select few work. I am not one of the fortunate ones who make stunning progress with the biologics. I am grateful that they do work for some. Still I have to plod along my own RA path. My book will put together the RA basics for a grounded base. It will discuss the role of advocating for yourself as vital to …

Knitting and RA

Last summer I had a strong urge to take up knitting again. I hadn’t knitted in many years and wasn’t sure I remembered how. I bought a book for teaching children how to knit and learned quickly that knitting was like riding a bike, once learned not to be forgotten. I enjoyed the projects. Easy. Big needles. Satisfying. The basket in the picture was one of the projects. Circular needles. A few years ago I was sent to a  hand clinic for my RA. I learned a series of exercises to strengthen my fingers, hands and wrists. It was the most helpful process I had had for my RA. I still do the exercises. I have added knitting as another way to exercise my hands. I enjoy projects simple and repetitive and I enjoy projects with complicated precise instructions. I usually knit a bit every day. There are times when I can’t knit. My hands are too inflamed. Sometimes my shoulder is too inflamed. So I just stop for a bit and carry on when …