Sunday, January 30, 2011

New Year. New Treatment!

A happy new year to you all. I wrote a few weeks ago I intend to post regularly on my blog. I tell you
now, yes, it is my intent. I also wrote I am not one to make resolutions, however, for 2011, I have. First, to
post more often on my blog. Secondly, and most importantly, I'm taking my life back. I have come to terms
with and have accepted the fact I am living with a chronic illness. My RA is not going away. Although this monster may have me, it will not control me. I read the most truthful quote not long ago. I wish I could remember where I saw it. Nonetheless, these words spoke volumes to me. It read; " RA is what I have, not who I am."
Enough said! Beginning the week of Christmas, I spent three weeks fighting shingles. I pushed through Christmas weekend for my wife and kids' sake, however, I was absolutely miserable. I went to an Urgent Care Center the next day after Christmas, received my diagnosis of shingles and was told to follow-up with my primary doc two days later. Wow! What a next two days that was. Constant pain and severe nausea. I did follow up, received some VERY STRONG pain meds and told to rest. I spent the new year celebrating
with my pain meds as I watched the ball drop in NYC. I have been better for the past two weeks.
Next, my wife gets strep which progresses to mono. Geez! What the heck else! She is better now as well.
To say the least, I haven't felt like posting until recently.
I am to meet with my Rheumatologist this week to discuss beginning my treatment with Remicade. I am hopeful this medication will help me regain some of my life back. As I write this, today has been a bad RA flare day. I know this sounds cliche' because so many people often say, " I'm just having a bad day." Really?
You are? I begin a new conversation at this point. However, this does bring up a good question. I'm certain those of you whom are RA veterans have raised this question many times over. What constitutes having a bad day? What does having a " bad day " mean for you? I do have to laugh in spite of myself now because prior to RA (which this was not long ago), I know I said that same question and did not give it a second thought.
I used to spend so much time planning for the future and to be honest, chasing after a "dream" not of my own. I have come to realize over the past 2 years, how much I took for granted. I had a busy career, I was healthy (haha), but I did not feel I was happy. Thank God, I have a loving wife. Since mid 2008, I have been taking a look back. I cannot change those things, however, I have had the opportunity to make changes during this struggle with my health. For that, I am thankful. I live in the moment now. I live in the present. We all need to stop and listen to the birds sing, the wind rustle in the trees, or, perhaps just listen to the sound...of silence. For, it is in that moment, we know we are truly alive.
I am hopeful and optimistic this Remicade treatment can bring the new ME, to life.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Controlling my " Monster "!

I hope everyone had a joyful holiday. Although I had fought a severe case of shingles beginning Christmas weekend, my family did enjoy the holidays. Instead of spiced rum egg nog, I had help from pain meds.
Today, however, is a bad RA flare day. My knee and hip joints feel like I have rocks in them. I have retreated from household projects ( for now ) in order to regain my strength.
My " monster " has won this early skirmish. Therefore, I shall rest and heal and prepare for the battle that shall commence later. Bring It On!
To all of you; have a wonderful day!