First let me say, we can never get others to fully understand the impact that Rheumatoid Arthritis has on our lives and the changes we face having it but facing this disease alone is almost as devastating as the effects themselves.

Explaining how it is having Rheumatoid Arthritis takes more words than I can possibly write.  It is fierce, devastating and life changing.  Reeling from what it does to us can hardly be put into words and honestly it can’t be understood truly unless you have experienced it for yourself.  While we watch our lives change because of RA we are also forced to watch many walk away, turn away or fall by the wayside long before the worse even begin.  How do you feel now with a life changed by a disease that has such a strange name but has a diagnosis with easy to read words but such misunderstood symptoms and conditions.

We have seen our lives change from being vibrant to being lucky to be able to move.  We see ourselves changing from a smiling person to someone who’s always trying hard to hide tears.  We see our favorite meal pass us by because we are too sick to even look at what we once loved to eat and having those energetic days are long gone because fatigue won’t let us do much of anything but if we are lucky, we may be allowed to move around slowly only to realize it’s almost time to start our fatigued day all over again.  There are the many times we’re forced to stop in our tracks because our foggy brains can’t remember what it was we were about to do or say, so we stand there confused trying to figure it all out while we do feel Blessed if we are lucky enough to remember it in the end.  But above all, we have no control over all of these changes that are happening to us and the love ones we’re losing in the process all in the name of this dreadful disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis.

As we painfully watch our world change, we are also watching some of the people around us change and some leaving us to fight this terrible disease alone.  A terrible fact that happens to more chronic sufferers than one can wrap their minds around.  This is a change that also takes its toll on us. We truly need support and someone in our lives to help us through the difficult times we know are ahead .  It seems the more we lose ourselves, the more we lose those in our lives.  The struggles we face takes so much of us leaving us vulnerable to both physical and mental repercussions and this is our sad reality. Changes, changes and more changes, the truth about having Rheumatoid Arthritis. We know it so well.

Some of us may be unfortunate that the physical changes have set in which makes the struggle much more complicated and this is the thing that most people can understand.  Still for those of us who do not have the physical changes, changing is still so prevalent in our lives as well.  The physical changes bring on struggles that are unbearable and can set into motion the emotional  whirlwind sitting just under the surface.  Still for all of us, the emotional changes come along with this disease due to the non-stop uncertainties we are facing because there are always more changes to come.  Our always changing and never ending disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis has us in its tight grip day in and day out never allowing us to know what to expect.  Just looking at us may not reveal the changes that we have endured and is enduring but deep inside they run rapid.  Our world with RA is an ongoing CHANGE since everyday brings something unwanted and different.  As we try our best to live with this disease, we will have to try to come to terms with our forever changing lives.  Whether it’s with the support we need or from the strength of ourselves, it is something that we need and must do.

While we have watched from diagnosis to now looking at the subtle changes, some more than others, we are still trying our best to come to terms with this disease.  Some of us look back and wonder why we have this disease, others may figure they have it because someone they know and love has it and passed it down. But for each of us, our hope is that it stops with us and this terrible disease won’t be passed to our children or their children because this is something that we would never wish for them.  They have watched us suffer so the thought of this fate for them, is a quiet prayer we pray they never have to face or experience.  Now we are here with Rheumatoid Arthritis and there is no turning back because it is a diagnosis that we have to live with and changes we have to do our best to adapt to.  Through it all, we pray for comfort, peace, support and understanding the very things that we’ve asked for from the beginning and are still seeking.  Why can’t these things be a part of our Changes?  After all it is what we need.

Be Blessed

photo credit:  bykst/