I know we aren’t suppose to like rheumatoid arthritis, but I am going to share something with you. Sometimes RA is my friend. Sometimes rheumatoid arthritis is the only friend that won’t stop telling me that it is time to rest. It is the friend that isn’t afraid of hurting my feelings and telling me I have overdone it. It has taken me a long time, but I have finally gotten to a place where I listen to the first messages sent from my friend RA that something isn’t right.
This has been a tough semester. Several things have been going on at home and without a budget in place for Illinois, I have not known if I have a job in January. (I do! Just reduced hours.) Late last week, all the issues that we’ve been experiencing seemed to climax. The stress I felt was overwhelming, but when I stopped long enough to take a breath, I felt RA talking to me. It was first in my hips and then in my shoulder. I wasn’t experiencing a huge flare yet, but RA was telling me that I had taken on too much and if I didn’t take the time to care for myself, things would get out of control with my body. I listened. I got my walking shoes on, put a leash on my border collie, and headed out for a long walk. I even turned off my phone. I let the sun shine on my face and let all the tension slowly release from my mind and body. I then came home and did a relaxing Pilates/Yoga video and took a long relaxing bath. It felt good to listen to my friend. Rheumatoid arthritis knew what I needed and luckily I listened. The next day I woke up and all the RA tension was gone! Thank you RA for being my body’s reminder to be good to myself.