Down, Down, Down

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Today is Day 1 of me taking 1mg of prednisone! I almost hate to celebrate because I know how likely it is to be suddenly forced to have to increase the dose of this nasty drug. But, I will celebrate a little. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been at only 1mg, and it’s taken seemingly forever to taper down this far from 5mg. It is a very difficult process: bit by bit, milligram by milligram, flare-up by flare-up. So far today I’m enduring this minuscule decrease fairly well. We’ll see what tomorrow brings, however.

I WILL be prednisone-free again someday. I swear it! Let’s hope it’s this month.

Good Morning?

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Are you a “morning person,” or do you absolutely dread and loathe mornings, like I do? No matter how early I go to bed or how much sleep I get, I always have a hard time getting up in the morning and I rarely feel well-rested. Or rested at all.  I was just reminded of this when an article I wrote a few years ago for RheumatoidArthritis.net popped up in my Facebook feed:

“Morning Misery”

I wrote this article when I first started substitute teaching and I was working at a long-term job subbing for a kindergarten class. Even though the article is now a bit old, my feelings about mornings remain pretty much the same. I hate them! I wish I didn’t, but I do. Nevertheless, I’m often forced to drag my stiff, painful body out of bed at an early hour, but THANK GOD FOR COFFEE!

Also, if you’re interested, please “like” and follow RheumatoidArthritis.net on Facebook! They have lots of great articles posted from several different patient advocates living with RA on a huge variety of topics.

Check it out here:  facebook.com/RheumatoidArthritisDotNet

Thanks for reading and have some GOOD mornings!

I’ll still be in bed.

Just Add Exercise?

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The “opioid crisis” is something that affects my life every single day, as it does for many other chronic illness patients I know. Here’s a recent article I wrote for RheumatoidArthritis.net about this issue once again: “Just Add Exercise?”

Sadly, with all of the misinformation out there regarding opioid medications for chronic illness patients (well, any patients), I know I will continue writing about this subject. So many patients who take and need these medications are suffering great harm due to the continually increased restrictions on them. And these are patients who take opioids responsibly, safely, as-prescribed, and under the care of a physician (such as myself).

STOP THE STIGMA: chronic pain patients are NOT addicts!

The Power of Love

Disclaimer: This piece has been entered in the Patients Have Power Writing Contest run by Clara Health designed to raise awareness about clinical trials. I am passionate about this cause and hope it will help raise much needed awareness about the power of breakthrough research.

Twenty-one summers ago I had just graduated from high school when I received the diagnosis that changed my life forever: Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). Sitting in the exam room on a chair next to my mother, tears fell down my face and panic rose in my chest as I heard the doctor give me the crushing news. In total shock, I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. No. No, I can’t have that. I’m too young! Images of twisted, misshapen, and mangled fingers filled my mind. Then the thought that the excruciating pain I had been feeling in my own hands and feet over the past several months would never go away terrified me. How can I live with this forever? I’m only 18.

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