Wednesday, April 20, 2011


     I've been exhausted.  Not just tired, worn down or burned out... EXHAUSTED.  The immeasurable fatigue drains all energy.  I feel like there is concrete in my veins.  My mind is murky and my body slow and creaky.  I have been trying to let myself rest when I need to but some days there just are not enough hours.  I feel like I could literally sleep for days.  Part of my issue is known and part is still up for debate.  I have been doing a lot of research and learning all I can.
     A blog that I found through Facebook has been a Godsend.  "Sunny Side Up" is written by a Christian woman in her 30's with RA.  The encouraging words and information I have received from her site are invaluable.  I, like her, am living with an "invisible illness".  Seronegative Rheumatoid Arthritis is only different from regular RA in that the patient does not test positive for the "rheumatoid factor".  All the usual RA symptoms are present... the joint pain and swelling, stiffness, full-body fatigue... it's like living in a cloudy bubble.  I am grateful to have a place to go where people understand when I say "I'm exhausted" or "not having a good day".  It is good connecting with people who are dealing with the same feelings (emotional and physical) as I am.
     I am trying to learn to take care of myself and "roll with the punches"... trying to learn how this disease ticks and how to keep the peace between it and my life.  I know there is still a lot to learn and that I will never fully understand what no one fully understands.  There may be certain triggers I can avoid but mostly it is not entirely logical.  Flares come at the most inconvenient, unexpected times.  When dormant there is still often the monstrous fatigue that plagues the entire body.
     I will learn.  After all, I guess I have the rest of my life to get the hang of it, right?  ;-)

1 comment:

  1. There is a certain amount of "grief process" one goes through when faced with a condition that is permanent, because there is a true loss. It is similar to the process a person experiences when they have lost a loved one, or have gone through a major life change that "takes" something from them. But take will not always live in "flare" mode, and the end of the grief process is acceptance, which will come. Learning all you can about what is known regarding your condition can help you cope, but be careful not to let the disease define you. You are Cassandra Mary Tuffey, a beautiful woman with a great deal to offer who happens to shoulder RA in her "pack" of life experience...NOT Cassandra Mary Tuffey, the RA-sufferer. I know some days are really hard, but you will also have many that aren't so hard. Don't let the difficulty steal your joy; let it make you more compassionate, and grow depth of character in you. Each new day is an opportunity to trust in the Lord for your strength, and the more you do this the greater your faith, endurance, and JOY will grow. You have a tremendous capacity for bringing joy when you are not self-focused; especially in your writing, one of your gifts that blesses me over and over. Keep sharing your heart. And remember you're not alone in this journey.


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