Life. It seems to get in the way sometimes. Trying to juggle school, friends, family, work, illness and everything in between, I sometimes forget what it is all for. My purpose. This week I recieved a lovely e-mail from a mother whose daughter has been suffering for many years. It could not have come at a better time. It reminded me of how I felt not too long ago. Scared, alone, desperate for answers. I had this disease but couldnt find anyone to relate to. My head was spinning. That is when I decided to start this site. To provide a place were other girls like myself can find hope. Without hope I would not have gotten through all this. I feel more and more like my old self everyday. It is not without sacrafice and sick Carrie is a completely different person than healthy Carrie. I dont get it right all the time, I sometimes do things to my body that I know I shouldnt. But this is how I live a life that still feels normal. A life that is not filled with pain and fatigue. I hope that you all know, we will survive, we must. There is no other option but to go forward. When those around us dont understand what it feels like to writh in pain. To want nothing more than to wake up in the morning with energy. To live a day where the smallest amount of stress doesnt send waves of pain thorough your body. Those moments when you struggle to breathe from inflammation but say nothing as you fear just speaking of it will send you into shock. If I have learned anything, I have learned that only the sick understand what it is to be sick. Others can say they understand, but they dont. It was hard for me to not fault others for this, but now I have learned my purpose. My purpose is to care for the sick in any way possible. Be it as a nurse, as a friend, or as someone who will for the rest of my life, be sick.
I just passed my first nursing class of the semester and I have learned a few things about being a student with RA.
1. If you have RA you should avoid stress. I dove in head first! Nursing school equals stress. I am managing well, but the pain is a bit more noticeable these days.
2. Homework KILLS my hands:( I need someone to write for me. I take breaks constantly to relive the pain, however this leads to me taking double the time to do homework.
3. We covered RA in a chapter this semester and I was asked to speak to my class. It was great to share! But, I was reminded how little people know about this disease and how everyone compares it to their grandmothers hip pain or their own knee pain. If it were that easy.
I am still struggling explaining my disease to new people I meet. I feel like carrying a pamphlet:) i know it could be much worse. I am grateful how well I am doing, despite the stress and abuse I am putting my body through. Thank you body for bearing with me lately. I will be gentle:)
Have a pain free week!
Carrie, student by day, bartender by night, patient in between.