As the heading says.  

Rheumatoid Arthritis lives with me.  I don’t live with Rheumatoid Arthritis

On November 28

My wife, daughter and I were shopping at St. Johns Town Center.  It was a fun and festive day of shopping and listening to Christmas music.  I love the holidays and the spirit of giving.  I didn’t feel anything wrong.  We had a great time and my wife and daughter did the carriage ride.  All in all, just an enjoyable time shopping for the holidays.

When we got home that evening, I started to feel a little under the weather.  I felt like I was about to have a fever.  I went to bed with the feverish feeling.  It was like going from day to night.

November 29

I woke up to use the restroom and that’s when it all started.  As I put my feet down onto the carpet, I felt a surge go through my body.  It felt like nails shooting all throughout.  I could not walk anymore for 2 months.  It was the worst feeling.  I have never experienced pain like this before.  My life had taken a serious downturn.

December 15

I ended up in the Emergency Room.  I was transferred to another local hospital because the initial one that I went to did not have a Rheumatology specialist.  It felt like life for me was over and nothing would ever be the same again.  All of my feelings were that it was all downhill from here.  My wife spent a lot of time with me and kept my spirits up, but it was hard.  Especially when she had to leave to go back to work.  She was and still is my support system, for that I am thankful!

December 24

I was sent to a local Rehab Hospital.  I was going to do anything I could to have some kind of normalcy in my life.  I wanted to be independent again, but at the same time with all of the negative news, I didn’t think it was going to ever happen again.  I was set to be there for at least 30 days if not longer.  My wife came to visit me everyday.  She would be the one to give me my baths and make sure I had everything I needed.  To be honest, all I needed was her company.

By December 26

I was already getting tired of being in the Rehab Hospital.  The Physiatrist there told me that I would never walk again.  I didn’t know what to say, think or do.  She was even processing the paperwork to order me a “Hoveround” type chair.  I didn’t feel like things were working out well for me there.  The Dr.  and I did not see eye to eye on me getting better.  I also spent a lot of time being woken up by my roommate.  I did feel bad for him, because he was an innocent by stander that was hit by a stray shot gun blast.  The only thing is being woken up every 2 hours so he could have his pain meds was not conducive to me healing quickly.  When my wife came to visit, I told her that as long as I can use the bathroom myself and doing somethings on my own, I was going to be independent enough to come home.  She hesitated, but finally agreed after seeing how unhappy I was there.

December 30

I woke up and felt that I was ready.  I could use the restroom by myself with some help getting mobile with a wheelchair. I would also be able to get to the kitchen in case I got hungry or thirsty.  I was excited and determined to walk again.  I must admit that I was second guessing myself if I would be able to do it, but I was also determined to, if that makes any sense.

December 30

I was home again!!!

January 5

Even though I was home, I still felt the ups and downs of being diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis.  For the first time, I had a lot of negative feelings about this.  It took over my life for the first year after being diagnosed.  I didn’t want to do anything.  I stopped working out, playing golf, basically anything that was active, I was not interested in doing any longer.  I took care of the pain more than taking care of myself. I lost control of my life.

It was quite a weird feeling.  I went from Bodybuilder, Surfer, Rock Climber, Moutain Biker, Sky Diver, pretty much anything extreme to doing nothing.

I spent a lot of time feeling sorry for myself.

December 31, 2010

Enough was enough.  I had enough of  Rheumatoid Arthritis taking over my life.  I was tired of the medication and how it made me feel.  I didn’t want to feel insecure about myself anymore. I was ready to take my life back.  I had to put a plan together to keep me on track.  I have the support system of my wife and family.  I was ready to take this on.

First Things First:

    • Put a plan together – Check
    • Lose 60 lbs. that Prednisone gave me – Done in 5 months and kept it off
    • Start working out again – Began in January on 2011
    • Think positively everyday – Done Everyday
    • Do things outdoors everyday. – Done Everyday
    • Live a Balanced and Well life – Done Everyday
I was ready to take my life back!

Now that’s it’s December of 2012, I decided to blog about it and share my journey.  My hope is to inspire people with Rheumatoid Arthritis to fight and keep moving.  I know it hurts because I feel your pain but you have to choose wether to keep hurting or take control of your life.