Thursday, May 16, 2013

A New Attitude

Today was a hard day. I've had bronchitis for almost 2 weeks. I'm on antibiotics which comes with its own little list of side effects. I am on Enbrel which causes my immune system to be suppressed. Therefore I can not take it because I need my immune system to be able to fight off the bronchitis. So, this will be my second week not having my shot of Enbrel, and that is causing me to have the lovely joy of a flair up in every joint in my body, and feeling exhausted the second I wake up in the morning. Joy.
I was fortunate that J was here the first part of the day to help take care of Muffin, and the other half Muffin went with my mom to play with her cousins. That left me, home, alone with my body who seems to hate me. When J left for work, and my mom took Muffin, I couldn't help but feel a little like the Tin Man from The Wizard of Oz: A lonely pile of rubbish, unable to move and bend, left here to rust alone. None of this of course is the fault of my family. It's mostly me just feeling sorry for myself, but nonetheless I do feel alone a lot. From where I'm lying (While being bedridden waiting for knee surgeries) I feel like all I see is people coming and going. Do they know how lucky they are to be able to go out into the world? I ask myself. You never know how much you are truly blessed with until it is taken away. It does go both ways though. Do I know how lucky I am to be able to rest when I need to? This is not a luxury they have as they are mostly running around doing their duties and mine.
It is important to try and stay positive on days like these. So, I decided to change my attitude and look at my situation differently. As I thought of being a Tin Man (or woman in my case) I decided that instead of thinking of myself as lonely; it would be better to think of myself as being blessed with wonderful family and friends who help me as I travel down the yellow brick road of life just as Dorothy, the Scarecrow, and the Lion did for the Tin Man. And instead of a pile of rubbish, I would remember that I am of great worth. I mean a lot to my Heavenly Father and the people who love me just as the Tin Man was loved and cherished. As far as being unable to move and bend...well that one is hard to turn positive. However, the Tin Man held on until someone was able to come and help him become mobile again. That is something I also am doing. I am trying to have faith that there is someone along the road that will come into my life and help me walk again. Lastly, the more I thought about it, the more I realized that the Tin Man was never left to rust alone. Are we ever left completely alone? The Tin Man was blessed with a great big heart, and he didn't even know it. He was always blessed with the gift to Love, and that will bring you through the toughest trials and the darkest places...IF you let it. I have A LOT of love in my life. I know that I am blessed in that area for sure. The love that I have for my Muffin, J, and my family is what keeps me fighting. That is priceless.
So, in changing my attitude, and looking at things in a positive way, I was able to smile. I was also able to enjoy the last few hours of my day, and J & Muffin were happy to come home to a happy wife and mommy. Everyone wins!


  1. It's o.k. to be mad, to get cranky, to even feel sorry for yourself. It's a tough gig you have. You have the right.

    I am impressed with your ability to see the positive, and yes, that will help lighten your load. Finding the tidbits of good among all the pain is remarkable and at times, will be what saves you.

    You are not alone. And you will struggle, but you will make it. No one knows why all this crap is now yours to figure out, but you can and you will.

    Continue to rethink and search out what went went well everyday, write down the good things each night. Let go of the bad, no need to chronicle what is obvious. But don't forget the good.

    Although many around you may never understand what you are going through, they do love you. They are awkward, confused, perhaps even say idiotic things, and scared- and they don't know how to help you. They will be frustrated also. Sometimes the best they can do is try to ignore you because watching you is painful for them, in a different way. But they love you and if they could, they would wish it away, trade it away, pray it away...and nothing is working for them either.

    Someone close to you is in mourning for you also. They mourn the you that used to be, the plans you two made, they're pretty pissed at RA as well for hurting their beloved. The fact is, you and a few other folks are mourning together. It's o.k. to be sad, mad, whatever. Get through is together if you can. Eventually you will pass through all those "phases" and end up with true acceptance, and find your new normal. Your family will too. And then, you will believe, for the first time in a long time, that you can (and will) do anything you did before, you just have to figure out a different way to do it.

    RA sucks the big one. But good people are working on a cure, and it's getting closer everyday. Your knee surgery is coming up, and that will be both a great experience and frankly, a crappy one too - the good with the bad. But once you get through it- at least those two joints won't hurt!

    Remember you have value and can 'give' - even on the days you remain in bed. Your little ones just need 'you', a book read, a cuddle, a reassurance that Mommy is 'o.k.'. Hubby will need to know you can survive while he is out of the house. You are important to a lot of people and a lot of people are counting on you to just "be". And again, it's o.k. if sometimes that "be"ing is ticked off or cranky.

    Hang in there. Keep moving forward. Keep your hope; and know, know that you are not alone.

  2. Thanks so much for your comment. I agree that keeping positive is the best way to get through this. I am very blessed to have a family that loves me so much! They are why I keep plugging along and one of the only sources of happiness for me right now. Thank you for your encouraging words!