Good Morning

IMG_6941_2
12.13.17 – Fridley, Minnesota

It was snowing heavily on my way to work this morning, yet despite the traffic and stress and headaches it caused, it was really beautiful.

Peace, beauty, relief, contentment–they’re not so hard to find sometimes, I think.

Just Say No?

bwsteroids
Self-portrait, circa 2012

If only it were that easy to “just say no” to bread, pasta, bagels, donuts, pastries, sweets, SUGAR–all of the delicious carbs that steroid medication (prednisone) makes you crave.

If only I could “just say no” to my doctor when he advises that I increase my prednisone dosage (once again) to help get a flare-up under control.

The prednisone/steroid battle is a tough one, as many of you already know, because despite its nasty side effects, it’s hard to say “no” to a treatment that is very effective and fast at reducing inflammation and pain.

Continue reading

To-Feel

 

Lists
Source: Instagram

I have so many “To-Do” lists yet I always feel unorganized, overwhelmed, frustrated, and disappointed. Maybe it’s time I start making some new lists?

TO-FEEL:

  1. Healthy
  2. Hopeful
  3. Peaceful
  4. Grateful
  5. Creative
  6. Inspired
  7. Excited
  8. Content
  9. Relaxed
  10. Loving

Dreamland: The Opiate Epidemic

dreamlandblog

Here’s my latest article for RheumatoidArthritis.net about an excellent book I recently read, “Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic” by journalist Sam Quinones.

“Dreamland: RA & The Opiate Epidemic”

The book is a fascinating and eye-opening account of the current “opioid crisis” and  basically the mess that our country is in right now regarding the shockingly high number of people addicted and overdosing on opiate drugs. Quinones, a former reporter for the L.A. Times, meticulously explains the origins of the crisis, including the “pill mills” (pain clinics) of the 1990s, the explosion of OxyContin onto the market also in the ’90s, and the rapid rise of black tar heroin trafficking from basically one small region of Mexico–the state of Nayarit, which is on Mexico’s western coast.

Even though the book deals with a lot of serious and heavy material, it’s definitely worth reading. And it’s a page-turner, which surprised me. For a rather long and dense non-fiction book, I found myself flying through it. I’ve also been recommending it to everyone, even those who don’t personally have a chronic illness or suffer from chronic pain. There’s so much sensationalist media coverage of the “opioid crisis/epidemic” right now that it’s difficult to know and understand what the real facts are. Sam Quinones’ “Dreamland” is a fantastic place to start, I think.

And please, let me know what you think of my article and the book if/when you read it!

Happy World Arthritis Day!

dontgiveup
Quote source: Instagram

In case you don’t know, today, October 12th, is World Arthritis Day. It’s late afternoon right now in Minnesota and the day is nearing its end, however I didn’t want to completely forget or ignore this day. Other RA friends and acquaintances of mine have been posting stuff all day long on their blogs and social media pages about how arthritis affects their lives. Regarding my own RA story, I recently (well, three months ago) reached an important milestone: the 20th anniversary of my RA diagnosis. I wrote an article for rheumatoidarthritis.net about it, if anybody would like to read it. Click on the link below to read a bit about what it feels like to have RA for 20 years.

“Happy (?) Anniversary, RA”

Thank you for reading it and this blog, despite how little I seem to be posting here. I hope you can find something worthwhile and good to take away from my story.

And, if you know anybody with RA, or have it yourself, please give that person (including yourself) a gentle hug today.

-Angela