You and I have shared the same body for over three years now – longer if you count the time you stalked me before I got a diagnosis. While I wish I could throw you out like a bad marriage, it seems we were married under the Roman Catholic Church and I am stuck with you. No annulment because of the time frame and like my student loan debt, I am stuck with you for life. Here is the thing, I was hoping for the New Year you could cut me some slack. Maybe you can go on a vacation for a while, a year maybe two while I enjoy remission.
A year or two wouldn’t be too much to ask. It would give me time to get rid of this weight that I have gained since you came to my life. You would think all the nausea and time in bed would keep me from gaining weight but those medications I take to keep you away aren’t working. Maybe my hair would have an opportunity to grow back. Because of you, I had to use methotrexate and while it has helped some, it has not managed to keep you tamed. Meanwhile, my stylist, Peter, misses me and I miss him. I can’t see Peter if my hair refuses to grow and is falling out. As a result, I don’t always feel pretty. Peter needs me and I need him and you are in the way of that.
You are not reliable either. See, when I want to evade a family event, you don’t show up but I have an important project due at work, you manage to ruin it. How can I be successful in my career if you are always in my way with the brain fog, the forgetfulness, and the joint pain? Remember the time that I had to call off because my body hurt too much to even get out of bed. Yeah, I really should have been at work at day but when I didn’t want to attend that crazy family event, you were quiet as a mouse. You want to keep in bed and you should know by now, I won’t give in. I will keep fighting you if you keep fighting me. You keep trying to take away from me the things I care about and you know what, that is really not up to you. I want my career and I want to spend time with my family and friends and sometimes, you ruin my plans but you don’t get to ruin my life.
How about that time when my son was wrestling in his first match? He rocked the house and I was in a corner sulking because you ruined my day with the hip and knee pain. I was doubled over in pain and I could barely walk or stand. I really wanted to be cheering my son on and you were in my way. That is what you do and you don’t seem to care who you hurt. How many times have I cancelled plans because you managed to ruin my ability to attend? I would like to be a member of the human race the upcoming year – you think you could help out?
Is it possible for you to give me one morning where I am not hunched over like a 90 year old woman? When my grandmother was 90, she wasn’t hunched over like this. As a matter of fact, she was still shaking her fist to those who ticked her off. My grandmother died a fighter – you think you could allow me to feel like a fighter once in a while. Or beautiful or normal or not sick?
I can’t foreclose upon you, I can’t have you arrested and I can’t drop you off a tall building. I am stuck with you for the rest of my life. Is it possible that those terms can be amicable? I mean, I have negotiated with you and I have begged and everything is still your terms. You came into my life uninvited and I can’t even throw you out. I can’t even pay for you to move away. I can’t even send you to the Bermuda Triangle.
All I am asking for the New Year is that you behave. If you want to be especially nice, remission would be great. If not, can you hold off the dry eyes thing? That really drives me crazy. I am tired of paying $15 or more for expensive eye drops every week. Who pays $15 for over the counter eye drops? People that need them! How about when you send my brain and my mouth in two different directions? I know what I want to say but the right words don’t always come out of my mouth. Also, is it possible that I can have one morning a week where I don’t wake up with stiff joints? Just one morning, but if you want to be generous, I will take more. How about less doctor appointments and infections for the New Year? If the doctor laughs at me one more time for getting ear tube dysfunction (like only small children get), I might run out of his office screaming. I am not asking for much – I am just asking that you and I get on better terms for the New Year.
We can compromise. If you keep my symptoms and pain at bay, I will exercise more. See, it is a win-win. If I exercise more and I have lessened symptoms, I won’t need to take all those medications. I know I can’t ask for a divorce from you but I am willing to work with you. If we have to live together for the rest of my life, we need to be on the same page.
These are my terms. Let’s negotiate.
The Owner of the Body with RA
Happy New Year Everyone! I hope that we are able to negotiate with our RA in 2012.