Living With RA
When I turned 44 I never dreamed that I would have to hear my Orthopedist say that I had RA (Rheumatoid Arthritis) and it was to the point I had to stop working.
I had been in Customer Service and a Legal Secretary for 17 years and suddenly these words stopped me dead in my tracks and gave me a slice of reality. My Doctor no longer wanted me working in an office or following my career. I would now be at home and on “the light duty list” of life.
He said many flights of stairs were a big no and that I could not jog or do extremely strenuous exercises. Long walks over a mile were out, yet I could swim and make short walks and ride a stationary bicycle. If I had any pain, I was to take my prescription meds and use the RICE method. Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. I discovered blue ice and used it also. It made my knee feel like it was on fire and then deadened the pain. I finally had to wear a knee brace if I made any long walks or had prolonged sitting or standing. I had a “trick back” with a hiding pinched nerve that sometimes left me no feeling in both legs and put me in a wheelchair. The two herniated discs that stayed aflame didn’t help any either. But, on a good day, I let my cane rest against the wall and feel blessed I could walk normally that day.
So, being a poetess and writer, I purchased a computer, printer and a good word program and began pursuing my real dream….writing. I now have the time to write and research and create. I have to get up and walk about some every hour and do most of my dictation standing, but it does get the creative juices flowing.
At night I have cramping toes, ankles, throbbing knees and a sore neck, but oh it was worth it to write again.