Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Complaint Department

At work I am an HR professional. Those helpful, happy people who interview, answer questions and listen to the needs of the employees. Some days, I don't really want to listen to people complain, as, in my estimation, they don't have anything to complain about. But that wouldn't really be in line with my profession, so I clam up, listen, empathize and offer my expertise.

I find sometimes I use my blog as the complaints department for my RA. I try to find the positive or humourous in my life, but the reality is that there is a dark and depressing side to have an auto-immune disease like RA and I try as best I can to keep it under wraps. Not always, as evidence from my last post. I have 2 complaints and 1 compliment. I thought I would try to balance things out here a little.

My current complaint is about a bald spot. Yep. I'm 35 years old and have a small bald spot on the back of my head. I discovered it last night while trying to ensure that all of my hair was straight (generally it is curly - not nice curly, just frizzy curly). I wish I didn't look. I don't really want to know that I have a bald spot. I love my hair. There, I said it. I have great hair. I don't brag about much in terms of personal appearance, but I love my hair. Or I love what's left of it. Reflecting back, I'm guessing I've lost about 50% of my hair in the past 2 years. Sigh. I thought I had dodged the "hair-loss" bullet with MTX, but it seems to have hit me square in the back of my head in the form of a bald spot. I will have to mull over how upset I am and how easily I can hide it until my next rheumy appointment in 2 months. I never thought I was that vain, but I'll need to ponder my relationship with MTX...

My second complaint is about the volume of my knee joints. This is a minor and somewhat humourous complaint. I snap, crackle and pop while walking up the stairs - all the time, every time. There is no pain associated with the noise, I just feel a little conspicuous. Like at work, when I'm walking up the stairs and colleagues can hear my knees. Being the HR person means I am generally outgoing, friendly and personable with the staff. So I say hello, ask about their day, talk about their project and even resort to talking about the weather to cover up the cereal-like sounds escaping from my knees. At times it's rather funny. And it doesn't hurt. I smile to myself sometimes thinking of the silly ways I cope with the quirks of my RA.

My compliment is to any friends and family that read this blog and listen to my complaints in real time. It can be very frustrating listening to someone when you cannot help them. Please know that by simply listening that you help. Wheither its calling me after you've read my blog to check in on me or listening to me rant about my inability to open a pasta sauce jar, I appreciate you taking the time to listen over and over again.

PS - Like the new look? New year, new layout!