An RA Update

So here we are almost two months since my wife was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Below are a few thoughts about what we have learned and observed so far. (For those of you who don’t “know” me please understand that I’m simply thinking out loud. I’m not looking for sympathy or “pats on the back”.)

  • RA sucks
  • Life goes on
  • RA affects us somehow in regards to almost every single thing our family does
  • There are ways to live life without it sucking so bad with some creativity. Unfortunately, one has been to tell people, “No”. Sorry, we would love to do that with you . . . ,yes, I wish more than anything I could teach that Bible class . . . , yes we would love to stay up late talking and playing games . . . , but the answer to all of those right now is no
  • A lot of the time I carry her purse because it is painful for her-I never worry if it matches my outfit
  • When she can, she loads the washing machine, but I get really mad at her when she tries to be Superwoman and move the basket full of wet towels over to the dryer
  • Her hands are affected the worst, but she also feels it in her feet and other joints
  • Pushing a grocery cart is impossibly painful for her
  • So is cutting certain foods, opening doors that require her to pull or twist the handles, squeezing toothpaste tubes, etc . . . . .
  • Right now one of our biggest worries is how RA is affecting her at work-it’s hard to start an IV with fingers that don’t work
  • RA is greatly underfunded when it comes to research especially in comparison to other diseases
  • People with RA are tough
  • Our kids are awesome and have become great helpers
  • My daughter tattles when my wife does something she probably shouldn’t
  • My sons have become incredibly sensitive to the cares and needs of their mom-I can only see this as being a positive attribute when they become husbands some day
  • There is a great community of people online who help with support, information, questions, and humor
  • Some doctors and medical professionals have no idea what RA is and how it can affect patients
  • We have started to make RA jokes-they’re not very funny, but we laugh like they are
  • We’ve learned more than we ever wanted to about drugs
  • Steroids are great, but are not the long term solution due to their side effects. However, when the pharmacy forgot to ship them on time we found out that they are what are basically keeping my wife functioning right now
  • Methotrexate (MTX) is a small dose of chemotherapy that she takes once a week-I’m always amazed at how small the pills are when I think of what they can and are doing (good and bad)
  • Our new Saturday night tradition is to fill her weekly/daily pill organizer-Yep, we know how to have a good time
  • RA can affect anyone at any age
  • My heart breaks most of all for those with Juvenile Arthritis
  • We concur with many in the RA community that the name should be changed to Rheumatoid Autoimmune Disease (RAD) to help raise awareness
  • Social media is shrinking the definition of “local medical coverage”
  • We think that “chatting” with rheumates via Twitter chats is incredibly helpful and cool
  • In the RA community I am called a caregiver-I strongly dislike the term-I think it takes too much away from how strong my wife is
  • My wife is stronger than me-she’s still working, still putting up with me, and has only had one emotional breakdown since the diagnosis
  • I’ve had more breakdowns than that
  • At times, when I think of what might come, I’m scared of the future and want to run away
  • When I’m scared I rest in knowing that God is the same yesterday, today, and forever
  • RA sucks, but God has given us this gift in order that we may glorify Him with it-Pray with us that we don’t waste it
  • God is good because of His son, Jesus Christ, and His death and resurrection
  • This is but a light and momentary affliction that He is working in our lives for His glory and our eternal good
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4 Comments

Filed under RAD

4 responses to “An RA Update

  1. Thank you for sharing. Your wife is so blessed to have you and the boys. God certainly has a reason for this time in your lives. I have been struggling with RA for quite a few years now. It wasn’t easy for me to find His purpose in all of this. Slowly but surely I see His hand working in and through this awful thing called RA and I am more sure of His love and care for me than I have ever been. This season in my life has a reason and purpose and I pray I will do my best to let His glory and purpose shine through me as I seek to fulfill His plans for me. God bless you and your wife.

  2. Kelsey

    Thank you for sharing!! It’s always great to hear about others suffering from RA- but not giving into the disease. I’m 17 and was diagnosed with rheumatoid about half a year ago. It’s been a struggle- but one I’ve learned a lot about myself from. Best wishes!!
    – Kels

  3. You are doing a great job of giving an insight in to your wifes RA, keep up the good work..I have inflammatory arthritis and know how hard it c an be..

  4. Rhonda

    Wow, this really hits home. I’m 12 weeks in and it has had a tremendous impact on me and my husband. Every day is a new struggle. The best thing a spouse can do is listen when we say we can’t do something or we’ve had enough. Thank you, and my husband, for being a supportive partner.

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