Friday, April 22, 2016

Rheumatoid Arthritis- The Beginning

I never planned to use my blog to tell about my personal journey.
I had this idea that it should be all about the crafts that I love and the things I enjoy doing and sharing.
After some reflection I realized that this maybe a great place to share-so that maybe someone can benefit from my experiences.

So many of us have things to battle..
Everything from health issues to kids, parents, spouses and who even KNOWS what else..
While there are literally tons of things on the internet about most of those topics, there are very few like this one; With an actual person telling what happens and how it feels.. 

With my last post being about bad side effects to medication that I was taking, I thought that others who are suffering may find solace in the fact that they aren't alone.. I know I do!!

Since I've made this decision, let me give you a bit of background on my Rheumatoid Arthritis;

I was about 26 years old when I started noting differences in how I feel.
If I remember correctly the first thing that happened when I knew something wasn't right is that my knee locked up. It was the most painful thing I had experienced at the time. I would literally have to climb into my car backwards and flip around because I couldn't even bend my knee enough to get in the car, that lasted about a week but my knee was tight and tender for weeks afterward.. Then my other knee did it. Then my shoulders went out and I could barely get dressed.

Ever cry while putting on your shirt because you have to move a joint that it's feeling very jointy?
Or Shuffle your pants up from the floor onto your body because you can't bend anything the right way to accommodate?

My feet would hurt severely-and still do. I developed modules on the bottom of my right foot and over a couple of months I noticed that my toes were not quite the same.. So much so that the modules under (now both) feet push against the bones and the whole top of my feet look swollen and even bruised sometimes. Walking is usually very uncomfortable and even severely painful. I haven't been able to wear high heels for about 7 years and I used to love them.. Now my shoes are either ugly or uncomfortable. I also use a cane when ever necessary.
We have hardwood floors in our home. I haven't walked around anywhere in our house without my Orthoheel slippers for over a year. If my feet are feeling better than usual I might attempt walking around my house for a second, but the pain comes rushing back, so I avoid it. (it feels as if the bones in the top of my feet are broken when I step down and apply pressure. This is not the case.. but it feels exactly how I imagine that would feel)..

This may sound funny, but I never realized your toes have necks (at least mine do/did) until they went away.. on each foot I have a toe that is always inflamed, so those 2 toes look like sausages and they have separated from the rest of my toes. (ahh, the things you notice when you must.. lol)

I think you get the idea..

So I started compiling a list of all of the things that had been going wrong in the last 2 years (at that time). It was a pretty lengthy list, unfortunately..
I called around because at that time I didn't have medical insurance. Medical bills are NOT something I like to mess with! I was a single mom of 2 boys at that time, too..

I found a great doctor that was very interested in helping me. Not only did he look at my list and take it seriously, he cut his office visit cost so I could afford it.
He also didn't require all of the X-rays since my Rheumatoid factor was more than double what it should be.

I seen him for a couple of years and he was great!

Now, Thankfully, we have medical insurance. Of course, my Doctor doesn't take what we have, so I need to find a new one..

This post's sole intent is to just BE there, on the internet.. for anyone who happens to need to search for such things.. As I was going through the stages of this, I searched for a long time and found very little information in this context (a real life account of what is happening and what it feels like).. There was plenty on WebMD, but you know how that is, you put in symptoms and it tells you the top 20 things that could be wrong.. NOT much help.. There are blogs out there too, great ones that I need to start looking closer at, but I didn't see many accounts of the beginning stages and how it felt..

I'm not going to publish all sorts of posts about my aches and pains, Lord knows every one has enough of their own!

But if your searching for answers and you come across my blog and it helps you in any way, I have been successful.

If you haven't already seen my post about Humira *Rheumatoid Arthritis and a rare side effect from Humira*, check it out;
I know my case was rare and hopefully you never need to find out..
but you may find it interesting if you got this far :)

Take Good Care and God Bless!

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