Posted in rheumatoid arthritis

The World Does Not See the Ugly Parts

This morning I woke to a grim reminder that my rheumatoid arthritis is here to stay. My hands were clenched together into fists. My left shoulder was stiff and numb and I was having shooting pains that started into my left shoulder going into my fingers. When I have good and okay days, I forget that RA is a part of my life. The stress I have endured in the last couple of weeks has finally allowed my RA hit all ultimate high. I knew last night when my head finally hit my pillow that tomorrow would be worse.

The thing that RA does not understand is that life won’t stop because RA wants to kick me, punch me, and make sure I stay down. RA does not get that my children rely on my me, my job needs me to be focused and fully functioning, that I only have three sick days left through the end of the year, my RA does not understand that I hate a sink full of dishes or a smelly fish tank, my RA doesn’t understand that I have assignments due for my master’s course, my RA does not understand that I have to take my son to his swimming classes, or that I have to get up in the middle of the night when my toddler has a nightmare. My RA wants to push me down and expects me to stay and as much as I would love to stay down, I can’t and it is very frustrating that I can’t.

This morning I was reminded yet again how ugly RA feels. My body was too swelled to pull itself up and my hands were no help considering they were clenched together. All I wanted to do was make it to the bathroom to massage my hands with warm water and just get all the stiffness out and whatever else my joints were doing to stop. Needless to say it wasn’t pretty and I never felt so ugly in my life. This is the worst part of the disease and any sufferers know all too well that these days are the days where it makes sense to hide under your covers. The rest of the world – our families, our friends, our co-workers, our bosses and strangers we pass everyday – doesn’t know this part or any of the ugly parts. They don’t live in our bodies and for all they know, we feel the same way they do. They don’t stop in their tracks because their legs suddenly stop moving or because they are having sharp pains in places where they never expected they would.

Am I productive today at the office? No, but I am here in body, but not in mind. Per the usual, I read my horoscope after I signed into my computer. Just so everyone knows, my horoscope is right 9 of 10 times. Today was one of the nine times.

Your horoscope for June 17, 2010: Women Capricorns are a lot like CEOs, whether they really are in that kind of position, or whether they just act like it. They are good at giving orders and being authoritarian, and devote themselves entirely to their work until the job is done. They are so busy, in fact, that others people may wonder if they even take the time to eat or sleep! Today’s celestial energy will help you to better care of yourself, Lana.

I really hope today’s celestial energy is in my favor. Sometimes, I wish I wasn’t born a stubborn Capricorn. Thank you for your comments in yesterday’s post. A part of me wanted to be told that everything would be okay if I went part-time. I have made a decision that if I do not hear back from the company I recently interviewed with, I would find some courage to speak to my supervisor and lay my cards out on the table, and let them fall as they may. I know that financially we will be fine; I just have to learn to be more frugal. I know that my husband doesn’t quite understand what I am going through with being all the things that I am in addition to being sick. He is used to my being confident and giving a Superwoman persona and I know that he fears my being any less that person. My husband is a Taurus and he spends a lot of his time looking to the future instead of living for today. The future scares him and because of that, he likes to prepare himself for it. He doesn’t know how to live in the present so when things fall apart, he doesn’t know how to swerve. Swerving and living in the unpredictable – that is my expertise. It is no wonder I get up when RA pushes me down. RA knows I am level opponent and it keeps trying to make me weak and I know that if I keep stressing myself, the playing field won’t be continue to be horizontal.

I read an article this morning titled “Rheumatoid Arthritis Has Negative Impact On Women’s Relationships.” The article sites an study out of the University of Leeds (UK) with research funded by the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR), an organization which represents the patient, health professional and scientific societies of rheumatology of Europe. The study found that rheumatoid arthritis puts a strain on the personal relationships of women. In fact,

• 40% of single women with rheumatoid arthritis encountered problem with finding life partners.
• 22% of divorced or separated women singled out arthritis as the major decision for separation from their marriage.
• 68% of women of women reported that they hid their pain to those closest to them.
• 67% said that they continuingly were looking for new ideas to address their pain.

The study also looked at the impact on the disease and pain as it affected productivity at work. Nearly three quarters of the participants reported that they are less productive because of the disease.

I have no comments except that RA sucks. A friend of mine emailed me something that made my day. She said that it made her think of me. (Girlfriends rock!) Anyway, thanks everyone for listening (reading) and allowing me to vent.

Women have one flaw
They have strengths that amaze men….
They bear hardships and they carry burdens, but they hold happiness, love and joy.
They smile when they want to scream.
They sing when they want to cry.
They cry when they are happy and laugh when they are nervous.
They fight for what they believe in.
They stand up to injustice.
They don’t take “no” for an answer when they believe there is a better solution.
They go without so their family can have.
They go to the doctor with a frightened friend.
They love unconditionally.
They cry when their children excel and cheer when their friends get awards.
They are happy when they hear about a birth or a wedding.
Their hearts break when a friend dies.
They grieve at the loss of a family member, yet they are strong when they think there is no strength left.
They know that a hug and a kiss can heal a broken heart.
Women come in all shapes, sizes and colors.
They’ll drive, fly, walk, run or e-mail you to show how much they care about you.
The heart of a woman is what makes the world keep turning. They bring joy, hope and love.
They have compassion and ideas.
They give moral support to their family and friends.
Women have vital things to say and everything to give.


2 thoughts on “The World Does Not See the Ugly Parts

  1. I love that poem! SO awesome! And I'm sorry you're having a bad flare today! I really feel relief that RA was not my diagnosis. Though the numb fingers and toes with FMS really drives me batty. Have a better day!!! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s