Friday, April 27, 2012

That's just the way it goes...

I went for my six-month post-op check in today. I had shoulder surgery in November and another piece of metal now calls my right shoulder home. As per usual, I spoke with a resident first, who ran me through the usual questions and range of motion.Up, down, behind your back, in, out, around and round.

What struck me about this visit and this resident, is that in the middle of my range of motion, I think the resident caught a glimpse of my life. He was talking about people like me who have had RA for 20+ years, and the shape of our joints and surrounding tendons. He looked at me straight in the eye, paused,  and said "it must be hard" in reference to living with RA. Yeah, you bet your ass it's hard. This is not a disease for the weak. No chronic illness is.

As usual, I deflected the comment - but he persisted and asked if I worked, was married and had a family. He seemed satisfied that my life was full in spite of my RA, but the presence of these things. In 20+ years of my revolving door of medical appointments, this is the first time that a doctor, surgeon no less, took the time to look in eyes and stand in my shoes.

I don't think about my RA on a day to day basis on it being hard or easy. It just is. And that's the way it goes. I'm back on Methotrexate, and it is taking no prisoners. I am exhausted. Oh yeah, I'm also going to Disney. Great combination. As I said before, this is not a disease for the weak. I am who I am, because of this disease.

Green Day's "Good Riddance (Time of your Life)" is about choices, decisions, life - the good with the bad. Just like life with RA.

Friday, April 13, 2012

The Merry Goes Round and Round

It may have been in or around a month since I've posted. I just didn't know what to say and/or didn't want to face a keyboard with what was rattlling around in my head.

I saw my Rheumatologist last month. I should give him a name - Dr. Kraag. Just in case there are any followers in Ottawa who are in need of a super rheumy. My stats show me that more people read my blog from the US than Canada and all the other countries combined. I have a strong Canadian presence (Hi Mom and Dad), but not sure about my fellow arthritis folks in Ottawa...

I am going back on Methotrexate, is the sum from my meeting about a month ago. Yep, I'll get right on that. It's been a month and I've done very little about that. Methotrexate and I go way back. I was on pills for portions of my University years, and more pills and then some injections in my adult life. We have a long history, MTX and I. But I just can't quite seem to get the needle in my leg.

I actually asked to go back on the drug. Yep, I asked to lose my hair, have mouth sores, feel nausea and fatigue.This all goes back to the constant battle that I have. I don't feel like absolute crap, but I don't feel good either. I'm just meh. So will more drugs help?  Who know. Let's stay tuned.

Giving myself an injection doesn't scare me, the side effects aren't great - so what is the delay? Apathy, perhaps. Absolute craziness in work and family life, perhaps. Integrating a new routine, maybe. I just don't seem to care is the perfectly honest answer. I am not flaring, but I can't walk more than 20 mins without some joint screaming and I don't seem to care. And somehow, I'm not sure this will help. But I keep trying.

Do you know that while I am only 36, I can't really remember my life pre-arthritis? Hunh. There's a thought to consider at a later date...

"I wanna know where my confidence went, one day it all disappeared
Well I don't need a doctor to figure it out, I know what's passing me by

When I look in the mirror, sometimes I see traces of some other guy."

Words that I get from a very distinguished Canadian band, Blue Rodeo and their song " 'Till I am Myself Again". I am also waiting until I can find myself again.