You’ve Just Been Diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis, Now What?

The moment when you’ve been diagnosed with RA can last an eternity. You’re sitting in a rheumatologist’s office and the doctor is explaining to you what Rheumatoid Arthritis is, and probably what it was. Because what RA is and what RA was are two separate things. Sitting in the waiting room can be a terrifying experience. Elderly men and women in wheelchairs, on walkers or sporting canes, gnarled hands and shuffling feet. RA was a different disease 15 years ago. It was a different disease 50 years ago. When your …

Do You Play Through the Pain?

I’ve had a lifetime of joyful physical activity. From a childhood on the beach with hours spent in the ocean, on bikes, in the sand playing soccer and volleyball or hiking in the cliffs, there was never a day we kids weren’t in motion. As a teen I learned to love running and as a college student I took up mountaineering and cycling, both on the road and on the trails. Early adulthood brought me back to running and it was only during the 2007 City of Angels Half Marathon …

RA and Non-Remissions

I hate the word remission because I’m not in one. I’ve never been in one. I mean technically the first 38 years of my life were a remission and the next 50 will be something else. Today’s an injection day and one of the reasons I’m grateful for an every 25 day injection schedule is that I only feel like a patient every 25 days. For some reason aches and pains don’t make me feel like a patient. Fatigue does. I find the fatigue to be the most debilitating part …

I’m Completely Unable to Keep My Commitments

I just don’t have enough hours in the day. Jane is now a seasoned CIT with exactly one day of work under her belt. When I picked her up from camp yesterday at three she plopped into the passenger seat and started talking. At 4.30 she stopped talking. It was abrupt, she was finished. She had observed that five year olds don’t have filters and they tell you the truth. They also tell the truth when playing things like Fireball. They admit to being out when the ball grazes them. …

How to Ignore Pain and Hurt Your Body More: A Lesson in How to not Live with RA

If you have Rheumatoid Arthritis the chances are pretty good that you live with a certain amount of pain. My doctor is always asking what it is on a scale of 1 to 10 and I’m pretty content at a 1 or a 2. I’ve learned to live with it and enjoy my life. Maybe I’ll get into remission one day but it’s entirely possible that I won’t and my life will still be filled with mostly great days. After the initial diagnosis I got immediate relief from various medicines. …