There are those days when I am able to move. There are those days when I am able to enjoy
life, and stay positive. Then there are
days like today where I question everything, and I don’t how I can handle
another day with this disease.
A whirlwind of emotions
This last month has been a whirlwind of emotions for me, and
that whirlwind of emotions is almost always accompanied by a flare and
depression. This last month has made me
question who I am and if I am strong enough to fight anymore. The truth is that sometimes I have
doubts. I recently started Lexapro, an
antidepressant for my depression, and it has really helped. But all of the issues that I have regarding
rheumatoid arthritis can only be treated if I am ready to work on them. And right now I am sad and tired. I am tired of being sad and tired. I get tired of thinking about how tired I am
of being sad and tired. Should I go on…? It always seem...
Our dinner on the Muslim island of Pemba was "Chips and Goat" -- the meat was tiny, dried bits that we HOPED was goat and not something more exotic, so we cheerfully just swallowed it and ate lots of potatoes!
After literally spicing up our lives, we stopped by a forest preserve, again, seldom visited by tourists. We were given a "lecture" by the naturalist on all of the birds and wildlife in the forest. We paid for our tour and began the hike through a variety of eco-systems including a marsh, upland forest, etc. The path was a major challenge for this osteoarthritis patient as the guide easily stepped over huge roots, and ducked under even bigger (to me) low-lying fallen trees. We had a visit to an abandoned colonial sawmill in the forest; but saw only 3 birds in the far distance as our token wildlife! We stopped at another site for a brief viewing of the flying bats, but requested to continue on to the airport so we wouldn't miss our flight to the island of Zanzibar.
In the 14 years since I was "officially diagnosed" with osteoarthritis, I guess I've been quite lucky. Yes, I have nine artificial joints from the waist down, and I'm certainly NOT going to say the surgeries were my idea of fun - neither were all of the follow-up hours of physical-therapy - but yes, I've been lucky. I have only had minimal bouts of horrible pain pre-op and the fun of struggling to get a new joint working correctly, but the reality is, I was fairly ok.
A few short months ago, I suddenly seemed to be falling once in awhile for no obvious reason. This was rather strange for someone who had climbed part of Mt. Kilimanjaro for the SECOND time in January , as well as climbing in the mountains of Madagascar. I was there in February 2011 to photograph endangered animals - and I did so without EVER falling.
The pain in my left hip (yes, it's artificial) suddenly became excruciating with accompanying pain down my entire left leg. The pain in my entire ba...
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