Are You Superstitious?

RA Guy Adventures of RA Guy

Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy, in general, is not a very superstitious person. Sometimes it can get all too complicated to keep up with the different good luck/bad luck rules.

Case in point: Having grown up in the U.S., I learned that Friday the 13th was an unlucky day. During high school, I lived in Italy for a year as an exchange student…where it was Friday the 17th that was considered an unlucky day. Now, where I live in South America, it is Tuesday the 13th that is considered an unlucky day. See what I mean?

Another common superstition is that bad news comes in threes. After the recent deaths of Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson on the same day (June 25, 2009), it came as no surprise that the death of anybody who was even slightly well-known in the days following was passed around on Facebook and Twitter as evidence of the fact that bad news does indeed come in threes.

Amongst those of us who live with rheumatoid arthritis, there is the much-talked about belief that any pronouncement of an improvement of symptoms will immediately be followed by a flare-up. As much as I want this to not be true, it just seems to prove itself to be true, time after time. Just this past Monday I shared on my personal Facebook account a status update of how well I was doing. I need not even fill in the details about what happened on Tuesday.

(Wouldn’t it be great if this worked in the opposite direction as well? That is, every time we talked about symptoms getting worse, we wake up the following day feeling completely fine!)

During these past few days, I’ve been forced to revisit my thoughts about the belief that bad news comes in threes. You see, both of my hands and my left foot have been dealing with a considerable amount of pain and inflammation.  On my left foot, the three center toe knuckles (metatarsal phalangeal joints, for those who want to be precise) continue to cycle through periods where I am unable to move them. The same goes for the three center knuckles on my left hand, and the three center knuckles on my right hand.

Which in a way is odd, because throughout the past few years, it has always been the outer two knuckles on my hands and on my feet that have experienced the most pain. I guess the knuckles in the middle finally decided to fight for the attention that they felt they were not getting. As a middle child myself, don’t even get me started on middle child syndrome…hehe. (If you’re reading this mom, I’m just kidding…love you!)

Does bad news come in threes? Maybe. Maybe not. But in regards to my fingers and toes, I guess this is better than bad news coming in fours…or even fives.

Stay tuned…for the next adventure of Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy!