Sunday, January 24, 2010
Obsessing over my hands
Lately I have been obsessing over the ulnar deviation (swanning) in my hands. As you can see from the photo above - the index and middle finger sway to the right. To the casual observer, this may not look like much - however, I am not a casual observer of my hands. I see them all day, every day and wonder what they will look like in to 10, 20, 30 years. I've seen seniors who have hands they can barely used because of deformities, and I worry that will happen to me. I know this will not happen today, tomorrow or the next day, but I know it will.
RA can be a tricky disease. One day you're fine and then changes slowly creep in, and next thing you know, it's 5 years later and your list of "what I used to be able to do" is gaining equilibrium with the list of things you can do. Scary. Just sorta sneaks up on you and taps you on the shoulder and says "Boo!"
I've had RA for 18 years - I've had it for more of my life than not, and when I take stock of what damage I've had so far, I know there is more to come. I'm not pessimistic, I'm realistic. I don't want to stick my head in the sand and pretend it isn't happening. I'm trying to prevent further damage, which includes taking an honest inventory of what could happen, and then planning for it. One more item to add to my list for my next rheumatology visit...