It has been five years this summer since I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, since those first clumps of hair fell out in my hands and my joints stiffened into burning fire-brands. I did not realize it then, but though the disease is physical, the fiercest battle is always one for my mind and my spirit.
Every day I choose to fight another day, to be positive, to be a wife and mother and friend and sister and daughter. But daily I have to choose. Sometimes I think of cooking dinner as climbing a mountain--one step at a time. Up and up. I reach the summit by getting dinner on the table. Step and step and step.
I got my Orencia again last week--the iv medication that I take monthly. And I restarted my methotrexate (self-injected weekly), both after a 4-month break. Also got a cortisone injection into my elbow. It bends now! No shingles--just some mild chills that seem to have faded now. Praying for the best, and that this shingles saga will at last come to an end.
|The infusion nurses always match our bandages to our outfits--and give out cute band-aids. I might possibly have the best nurses around!|
As much as I choose to fight, to be positive, to say "life goes on," I am weary right now, tired of the fight. And spirit tiredness can feel even worse than RA fatigue. I have to look up for the strength to renew myself, outside myself when the mountain climb becomes a trudge.
"I have to say that you and I are not supposed to be this way. As creatures in need of somebody outside ourselves to name us, as creatures incomplete outside the companionship of God, our souls are born distorted, I am convinced of it. . .that Moses was right. That his explanation was greater than Maslow's or Pavlov's. I believe without question that none of us are happy in the way we were supposed to be happy. . .I believe we are in the wreckage of a war, a kind of Hiroshima, a kind of Mount Saint Helens, with souls distorted like the children of Chernobyl. As terrible as it is to think about these things, as ugly as it is to face them, I have to see the world this way in order for it to make sense. I have to believe something happened, and we are walking around holding our wounds."
I think of this at times when I am too tired or too much seems wrong. Life can be beautiful. But it can also be crushingly difficult and harsh.
One day at a time.
The Lady in Pred