A Rheumatoid Arthritis Morning

Morning

“Success isn’t about achieving something in the future,
but about doing something right now that you love.”
-Leo Babauta, zenhabits.com

10:00 am

Yesterday, I had one of my usual morning episodes of morning stiffness, which lasted until past midday. While the inflammation was present throughout my entire body, it seemed to be particularly focused on my ankles. On cold days, some people idle their cars for a few minutes in order to warm up the engines. I, on the other hand, continuously rotate (or at least attempt to rotate) my feet in gentle circles until they are deemed flexible enough and strong enough to support my body weight…then, and only then, do I get out of bed.

12:00 noon

When it was time to eat lunch yesterday, I still wasn’t able to move about…so I had lunch in bed. My corner of the bedroom is full of different types of tables. There is the typical nightstand table, which holds a radio, my alarm clock, a lamp, and a small selection of arthritis lotions. Next to this is a blue wood folding tv table–at any given moment throughout the day, this is holding either a stack of books, my laptop computer, or food and drink. Last, but not least, is the serving tray with folding legs.  Normally associated with romantic breakfasts in bed, its presence takes on a much more pragmatic role in my life.

2:00 pm

I’m finally able to walk around, so I decide to go outside and breath some fresh air while sitting in the warm sun. I decide to do some light stretches while sitting down…only yesterday did my physical therapist tell me that the muscle contracture surrounding my right elbow was the worst she’s ever seen in her career. It feels good to flex, even though I have to be extremely careful with my left knee (which has not been able to open up completely for month). I think to myself that I need to do more of this: sit outside in the sun and do some gentle exercises.

4:00 pm

It’s time for a bath. In the past couple of years I’ve showered only once, and that was that day almost a year ago when I woke up late for work. Now, I prefer to fill the tub with hot water and soak for at least fifteen minutes. Luckily, at the moment, getting in and out of the bathtub is not presenting any issues.  This routine, which used to start my day, continues to be pushed back on my schedule. Nonetheless, it’s a wonderful excuse for a “new start”, no matter what the hour.

Morning is a state of mind, not a time of day.

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

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