Are You In The Superhero Wall Of Fame?

About a year ago, I compiled a list of the superhero powers that had been submitted on the Superhero Wall of Fame here on my blog. I love this list, as it’s a wonderful reminder of how much we can do despite the fact that we live with chronic illness. Sometimes, when living with chronic pain and disability, it’s all too easy to focus in on what one can’t do. This list continues to grow. If you haven’t already signed the Superhero Wall of Fame, please do!

Superhero Wall Of Fame

Are you in the Superhero Wall of Fame? If not, add your name!

Superhero Powers As Submitted By Superheroes Like You

Finding peace and happiness despite the physical issues. Living with RA. Writing this blog. Ability to smile through it and enjoy the moments. Design. Living with RA all by myself. A woman learning to appreciate who she is, and much much more. Photography. Traveling the world. Ride off-road motorcycles. Living with RA-but not suffering from it. Putting a smile on people’s faces. Cooking. DRAMA MAMA. Approaching my health issues with a positive outlook. Enjoying one day at a time. Does not try to let RA stop her from joining in on everything that life throws at me. Informing the world of the wonders of homeschooling two children. Knowing what I can and can not do. More are added everyday as I realize what my mind and body are capable of! Organizing this league of superheroes. Fighting the evil forces of RA medication free. Trying to get my pre RA fitness back! Super Mom. Dealing with bent fingers. Running a home. Learning how to deal. I love my life, R.A. or not. I have a positive attitude & freely share it. Speaks Japanese. Baking cookies. Blogger wannabe. Making my life count for something more than RA, OA and being old. Staying chipper despite wanting to go back to bed. Super Daughter. Dispenser of ((((HUGS)))). Random thoughts. On this new quest to conquer RA. Supporting the work of contemporary artists in a capitalist world. Cheerleader. A wife (pretty amazing one too if you ask me). On a mission to control RA and not to let RA control me. Takes care of disabled husband. Tough broad that doesn’t let anything get her down! Baking. Loves to cook and to can Salsas. Encourager, cheerleader, shoulder to lean on for young people with arthritis and RA. Being a comic strip character. Writing a blog/column. Care, love & keep up with my husband who started this journey with me only a few months after we married. Stopping the painkillers before I get addicted. Mom of 2 (1 preteen boy and 1 teenage GIRL). Ability to always make my daughter laugh and smile despite what my body feels like. Nurse by profession, medical researcher by necessity. Counting my blessings and staying positive on this unexpected journey with many rocky roads and steep hills to climb. I can take super naps!! Recent subscriber of “Arthritis Today” which I thought was for “old” people. Super Hyper-Hyperactivity (can clean house, cook food, care for children all without succumbing to the dreaded Uber Fatigue). Writing a blog. We are survivors of many thing including ails and pains. Super Wife. ‘Multi media artist’ (ok, I have ADD…I do a little of this, a little of that…). Crafting. Mom to 2 grown boys and 3 felines. Staying Positive. Wonderful kids and grandkids! Blogging about the ups and downs of RA and alternative medicine among many other things. Good Listener. I live with and care for my autistic brother. Spreading the word about good blogs. Crochet. Independence is a state of mind, not a list of tasks to be completed. Being a dad of a 12, 6, and 5 y/o. I’m also glad to be an advocate and voice for people with invisible disease to people of my age group. Single mom of three superkids who manages to juggle soccer hockey baseball and golf schedules around flares, infusions and therapy. Wife of 26 years. More of my powers are realized each and every day. Super Strength (can amazingly hold 2 toddlers during a flare of Lupus and Fibro pain). Loving two puppies. Just trying to get my body back in fighting order so I can finish college. Supporting my 60 year old mum who has a brand new RA diagnosis. Continued service while working as a firefighter. Making it through each day with RA, Fibromyalgia, Grave’s Disease, and Sjogren’s syndrome while working full time. Loving life. It’s a challenge that is worth fighting! Gardener. Excellent wife and mom and learning to be an excellent nana. Student. Wife. Listener for the older crowd who have arthritis and RA. Writing. Always good for a few laughs. Losing weight, despite the Prednisolone. Knitting. Wife of 10 years (!). Spreading the word about my arch nemesis…the disease of Rheumatoid Arthritis! Raised a daughter. Living with RA and Fibro. I can make anyone laugh!! Cooks, cleans, shops, gardens, and is a freelance writer and editor. Patient. I love to sew and read books. CABG X6 survivor! Living a full, active, happy life with RA, scoliosis and cardiomyopathy. Lots of hugs to give. Swimmer (lapsed). Laughing at the absurd. Cheerleader. Mom to 2 dogs, 2 cats, an assorted bunch of fish and any stray that happens our way. Distraction. Mom of a fabulous daughter with Down Syndrome who will always live with me! Having a wonderful husband. Loves to explore new cities. Restoring order in the kingdom is the primary objective of my “job”– disabled stay at home mom/taxi driver…hehe. Knowledge is POWER! Traveler on the RA journey, meeting new superheroes every day. Husband of 40 years. Learning how to accept RA. Became Autoimmune Girl my freshman year of college and most recently leveled up to FM Girl. Wife to one full time construction worker/college student. Nurse (lapsed). Good mother. Musician. MOPS steering team. Concentrating on the many joys and blessings in my life. Have more hobbies than there are hours in the day. Taking care of our 5 pets and a husband! Good company. Mother of two grown children. Disabled nurse. Mother to my three boys. Balancing life after college, my new career, a boyfriend, friendships, and family – all while maintaining the millennial pace. Coupon shopping queen. Photography as a hobby & stress reliever. Dancer. Studying in the week. Managing pain through meditation. Open to trying every unconventional RA treatment under the sun. I work a 12 hour shift 4 days a week as a pressman (printing). Reffing roller derby when I can. 2 kiddies under 3 (who understand that sometimes Mumma can’t wrestle!) Working full time in sales & marketing. Running a home. I have a very large vegetable garden which brings me peace & self-worth. Work long hours in a warehouse pulling orders. Photography. Mother of three college age boys. I can read, write and speak Spanish. Owner of two titanium shoulders, with cadaver bone grafts, one fused wrist with metal rods, one foot with screws, the other foot-soon to be fused. Super Grandma. Homeschooling my kids. Daughter of Diabetes Gal and niece to her sister, RA/FM Gal. Accepting RA as a part of who I am. Workout 4 days a week. Supersonic hearing (Can hear any of her 3 children turn over in bed across a house). Care, love & keep up with my 2 Doberman Pinschers. Staying positive and happy is the best medicine! Working full-time as a nurse. I am a wanna be blogger and an ultimate crafter. Sabbath School teacher. Knitter. Being a good wife, friend and daughter! Working as much as I can. Mom of three boys. Living with RA. Cooking & baking. Being a PROUD military wife. Power four wheeler. Carrying on a semi-normal lifestyle while living with RA. Good enough mother and wife. Having a positive outlook on life. Multilingual. Good grandmother. Enjoy gardening, decorating and photography. Loving daughter. Working full time with children. Keeping my sidekick (hubby with fibro) on his toes. Mom to a 9 yr. old. Blogging. Momma to a wonderful furbaby. Living with ∞itis (RA, etc). Eternal student. Every superhero has a sidekick …right? My sidekick buddy that helps me is a Great Pyrenees with a mohawk named Frankie. Being a mom. Wonderful mom to 3 pom fur-kids. Take care of a 3.5 acre yard. Expert pinochle player. Great wife, mother, cook, clean, taxi driver, and fairy godmother. Keeping sane through a lot of uncertainty. Homeschool. Figuring which medical concoction works for now. Living with RA. Trying not to get fat. Gardening. Working full-time in the crazy hr/telecom world. Cat lover. Camping. Kissing my lovely husband. Epidemiologist (lapsed). Worked full time as a journalist. Good cook. Going back to work in January…to be a great nurse again. Have a great sense of humor when it comes to most things. Working to support myself and being a student is hard but my will is strong. Mom of 8 great kids. Ability to make it through the tough times. Cooking. A-1 wife. Spent 20+ years as a nurse practitioner treating folks with R.A. Quilter. Regularly uprooting myself and moving around the world. I love to read, swim, cook, bake, and take care of my home. EFL Teacher (just started full-time work again after a couple of years off). Wife. Learning how to deal. RA advocate. Working 12 hour shifts in the ER on my feet for 13 hours. Worrying…lots of worrying. Living with RA. Writing a blog. Living a God-centric lifestyle. Running a business from home. Great sense of humor. Continue the RA journey refusing to let it ruin my happy life. Licensed Ins Agent. Keeping track of 12 grandchildren. Working with service dog. Excellent wife. Blogging. Keeping sidekick (husband with heart problems and fibromyalgia) entertained. Disabled nurse. Mum to 3 year old girl and 8 month old boy. Living with RA away from home. Understanding kids. Making popcorn. Taking long drives with hubby. Fighting fatigue to keep going. Refusing extra painkillers. Working my butt off and hopefully getting my phd. Dog walker (sometimes). Smiling in the face of adversity. Enjoying what I have. Taking care of family, husband and 2 daughters. Appreciates the gifts that the world offers each day to those who take the time to look. Trying to adjust to freelancing as a graphic designer and photographer. Working at Target. Running a small business full time. Educating people that disability is not something to be scared of! High tolerance toward pain. Mother of two active boys (10 & 8). Juggling a Uni degree with “aunty candi” duties and the prospect of joint replacement whilst keeping a smile on my face. Drawing. No human partner, but living with her 3 Superhero Cats (Spider, Lugosi & Ruby) who she finds tolerate her chronic illness so much better than any human that she has met. All sorts of needle-crafts. Getting up and going to work each day. Killing zombies. Loves music and photography. Living with (mild) RA. A law school graduate. Getting dressed, bathing and walking without assistance. My ability to mind surf as I can’t physically , YET. Being married. Embroidery. Toughing out life without medication so we can get preggers. Feeling pretty well and praying to stay that way. Full-time college student at a university. Photography. Educating people that not all people with Arthritis have Rheumatoid… ahem …anyways. Loving my husband. Pink Energy that allows me to go back to school. Work as a consultant. Continue walking on the beach. Spending quality time with my family. Using a supercool electric toothbrush, because a regular one hurts to hold. Positive Thinking. Feline & other animal communications. Works from home as a web & graphic designer. Defying stupid RA-beating suggestions from well-meaning friends with a single squawk. Surviving 2 hip replacements. Working full time. Into Goth/Metal/Rock music. Getting on with life. Painting. Sitting at home while my friends go out and party/shop/be normal, continue living my life when I just want to amputate my body from my head and put it on Jessica Alba’s body. Smiling through that Enbrel sting. Learning about myself through travel and introspection. Having a dead guy (cadaver bone) in my ‘boo boo’ arm. Would be marathon walker. Hobby (and sometimes paid) photographer (has a couple of photography websites to show off her pictures). Living with RA. College Student. Fatigue fighting and staying healthy are two Superhero Powers that I need work on. Close relationships with several amazing doctors/friends! Writing my blog. Chilling with friends. Research, research and more research, saving the world one germ at a time (in the military). Employing Personal Assistants. Being just a little odd… being perpetually young at heart. Working as a waiter in the weekend with my colleague RA. Only taking otc drugs. Watcher of Star Trek, especially Voyager. Do talks about RA to medical students and generally try to raise awareness. Being married. Believing that I can. Making sure that everyone I know knows about RA and knows that WE can. Keeping weight on this body and running when my right foot will allow it! Mother of two gorgeous and brilliant children (boy – 13, girl – 12) and one 3 year old Yorkie who sits on my lap and comforts me on my bad days. Being. Abandoning walking stick…not knowing how long it’ll last. Photography. Crochet. Working full time and being a waterman! Enjoying every single day as you never know what life will bring. Complete and utter geek lover of computers and video games. Working full time. Loving husband. Convincing NHS that I need anti-TNF therapy. Getting anti-TNF therapy and have it revolutionize my physical. I’m a teenager living life to the fullest; no matter what my disease sends my way. Artist and writer, even on days when my hands hurt almost too badly to pick up a pencil. Part-time feline management (three cats, one wonderful hubby who job-shares on the cat front). Living with RA (mild to moderate these days). Working for the Government. Cooking. Smiling, having fun and simply being fabulous…no matter what!! Big/little sister, and soon-to-be aunt. I’ve overcome my fear of needles with Enbrel. Raising awareness about all types of arthritis. Crafting. Being crazy I love to make folks laugh and smile as it’s a great medicine. Taking care of my family. Teaching. Having a bionic knee, hip, screws in feet, waiting on new shoulders and knuckles. Being a mom. Being a scientist. My cat Rosie. Start dancing again. Pouring from a gallon of milk, by using the edge of a table or countertop. Great sense of humour. Fighting fatigue. Getting out of bed in the AM. Taking one day at a time.

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

Psoriatic And Rheumatoid Arthritis Blogs

I’m 30, I live in Scotland. I have psoriatic arthritis and I am a Quaker. I’m married, I have a young family and I teach part time. This blog is an attempt to make sense of my life with arthritis and to collect some of the writings and quotes on Quakerism that I find interesting but never seem to remember or apply to my life!
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My Life As A Southern Traveling Girl
Life goes on with me or without me. So I’m going to participate for as long as I can at whatever level this disease will allow. I’m a searcher by nature so I’ll keep reading and learning. And hopefully finding new friends and laughing around the  way.
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National Autoimmune Disease Awareness Month

aardalogoThe American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association is dedicated to the eradication of autoimmune diseases and the alleviation of suffering and the socioeconomic impact of autoimmunity through fostering and facilitating collaboration in the areas of education, public awareness, research, and patient services in an effective, ethical and efficient manner.

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A Matter Of Perspective


My Bedside Table

Some fresh-cut roses from the garden, standing in a small glass pitcher. A daily strip of medicines from my weekly pill organizer, with an evening dose of Plaquenil visible in the front compartment. A trio of creams for my arthritic hands: Aspercreme, Peaceful Mountain Joint Rescue, and Bengay.

As I continue to encounter new levels of pain and disability, the thing that surprises me the most is not how much it hurts (and the usual corresponding amazement that yes, it can actually hurt even more). What surprises me is how much less of a challenge living with this illness is when approached with a sense of emotional strength and calmness.

And while I would never taunt my rheumatoid arthritis, I am actually feeling a little bit of the “bring it on” attitude.

Yes, there was a lot that I was not able to do during this past week. I’ve been bed-ridden for extended periods of time, and in addition to periodically losing movement in my legs I have also been losing movement in my arms from the shoulder on down. But there is also a lot that I have been able to do.

I’ve been reading and listening to music and podcasts. I was finally able to do some minor updates that I’ve been wanting to do, here on my blog. I was able to leave the house a couple of times this week, once to meet some former students for coffee and another time to go to physical therapy followed by a quick visit to the grocery store. (It’s funny how something as usually mundane as going to buy groceries can become one of the highlights of a person’s week.)

Managing expectations is playing a large role in my ability to weather this current storm. What are my expectations? To do what I can do…and to not do what I can’t do. It sounds simple, I know…but it’s taken me years to get to this place. No more fretting, no more feeling like a failure on any certain day. No more pushing myself beyond my limits.

Sure, concerns continue to creep up again, this most immediate one being finances. But I refuse to allow myself to worry. (Worrying in and of itself never really fixes anything.) I believe that if I have my health and my happiness, the other pieces will start falling in place. In the end, things always work out.

It would be so easy to concentrate on everything that is not working in my life right now, but I’ll continue to focus in on everything that is working. When I look at things this way, I’m pleasantly reminded that this list is always much longer than it initially appears to be.

Pain and disability continue to be a constant presence in my life, but I am now looking at them in a different way. It’s all a matter of perspective.

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

NPR: Patients Seek Moral And Medical Support Online

Talk of the Nation – March 3, 2011

A joint study between the Pew Internet and American Life Project and the California HealthCare Foundation finds that one in five Internet users go online seeking others with similar health concerns. And after receiving a diagnosis, especially for rare diseases, an increasing number of people are turning to the web, in the growing trend that the Pew project calls “peer-to-peer health care.”

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This AS group was mentioned in the NPR program:

ASAPAnkylosing Spondylitis Awareness Project
We are a community of patients, family members, and friends dedicated to raising awareness of ankylosing spondylitis and related diseases in both the general public and the medical community. We support the mission of the Spondylitis Association of America.

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This brings to mind a similar study from May 2010, in which Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy was cited:

Web 2.0 Platforms and Health Care: How Online Support Groups, Blogs and Social Networking Sites are Facilitating Online ‘Communities of Care’

Blogs can often attract quite a “large and dedicated readership” because they “engage people in knowledge sharing, reflection, and debate” (Boulos et al, 2006).  One such blog with a large readership is “Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy – Adventures of a superhero on his journey through chronic pain and debilitating inflammation”.  Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy (or RA Guy for short) shares not only his journey through a chronic disease, but comprehensive information about auto immune diseases and their treatment.  RA guy also has a Facebook profile with links to the blog, and also a Twitter presence, again which links back to the blog.  The blog has multiple comments to each post, and additional comments are also posted on RA Guy’s Facebook profile whenever he puts a link to the blog.

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