The Arthritis Society Walk To Fight Arthritis

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Walk for yourself.
Walk for someone you love.
Walk for over 4 million Canadians living with arthritis.

On Sunday, May 15, 2011 thousands of people in 25 communities across Canada will come together to raise funds for this very important cause. Hosted by The Arthritis Society and presented by the makers of TYLENOL®, the Walk to Fight Arthritis is your chance to fight back against a disease that affects the lives of over four million Canadians every day.

Visit www.WalkToFightArthritis.ca/toronto today to register for the Walk and join the fight against arthritis!

Event Details

Sunday May 15th, 2011
Glendon College (corner of Bayview & Lawrence)
2275 Bayview Avenue
Toronto, ON

The Arthritis SocietyThe Arthritis Society is Canada’s principal arthritis health charity that empowers over four million Canadians with arthritis to live their lives to the fullest by combating the daily limitations of arthritis. In the last 60 years, The Society has invested more than $170 million towards arthritis research to develop better treatments and, ultimately, to find a cure.

More Info: http://www.arthritis.ca

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RA Guy Is 2 Years Old

Two year ago today, I launched Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy with the following post:

Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy Saves The World!
April 24, 2009

Okay, so maybe I didn’t save the world – yet. But I did launch this blog, and on a Friday afternoon no less. Now I can kick back and relax over the weekend. I’ll go back to saving the world on Monday.

The idea to start my own blog has been simmering around in my head for a while, but upon hearing for the third time in a month “Why don’t you start your own blog?” I finally decided to give it a go.  I put aside my self-paced iPhone application development training (and corresponding new MacBook Air – what a lovely thing) and jumped into the world of Adobe Illustrator (illustrations on the right) and WordPress (blog publishing software, for those who are not familiar).

I hope to have fun sharing adventures of my journey through chronic pain and debilitating inflammation.  My rheumatoid arthritis has undergone a major progression during the past few months, and I need to turn my daily routine of putting on and taking off my wrist guards and ankle protectors into something fun.  Hence, Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy and his tungsten wrist guards and titanium ankle protectors.

And yes, I really do still have a full head of hair.  Although two weeks ago I started taking Arava for my rheumatoid arthritis, and one of the most common side effects of this drug seems to be hair loss.  Here’s hoping that I don’t become follically challenged.  (Although I guess being able to comfortably lift a brush is more important than having a full head of hair – darn those wrists!)

So welcome to my world and welcome to my blog.  Don’t be shy – I would love to hear from you.

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

Since writing this first blog post, I’ve gone through two rounds of hair loss. (But my hair has always grown back. I’ve also recently noticed that my first gray hairs are starting to appear!) My MacBook Air died a spectacular death a few months ago, both digital and physical. I may not have saved the world yet, but I did definitely save myself from continuing to walk down the road of hopelessness and depression that I had been on for all too long.

“My rheumatoid arthritis has undergone a major progression during the past few months…” These words, which I wrote a couple of weeks ago, could have been just as easily written last week.

I’m pleased to announce that Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy is being picked up for another season here in the blog universe! So please join me here on my blog, as we anxiously for what adventures are in store as RA Guy continues his journey through chronic pain and debilitating inflammation. (I’m saddened to say, though, that Thor and the Green Lantern beat me out for this summer’s blockbuster movies…maybe 2012 will be the year I hit the big screen!)

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

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Happy Birthday!

Justice League CupcakesThe bad news? This morning, I woke up feeling like a piñata that had been beaten with a stick all night long.

But there is good news…I guess that this feeling is just a tad bit appropriate, because today is my birthday!

I turn 38 today. Forty is just around the corner, and this year marks almost a decade some my first symptoms of RA started to appear.

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

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Me, Myself, And…Us?

“I came upon a doctor who appeared in quite poor health. I said, ‘There’s nothing that I can do for you that you can’t do for yourself.’ He said, ‘Oh yes you can. Just hold my hand. I think that that would help.’ So I sat with him a while then I asked him how he felt. He said, ‘I think I’m cured.’”
- Conor Oberst, American Singer

One of the most challenging aspects of living with rheumatoid arthritis has been how different it sometimes makes me feel…and when I start feeling less connected with those who are around me, I start feeling more lonely…and when I start feeling more lonely, I start to Google different terms related to feelings and emotions and rheumatoid arthritis and chronic pain, in order to see if there is anyone else out there who is feeling just the way that I am feeling.

Quite often, probably due to the popularity of this blog, somewhere amongst the top search results of whatever I am Googling there is an entry linking to a post that I have written myself, as Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy.

You might think that my first reaction would be one of happiness…but to be honest, it’s usually one of annoyance. I don’t want to read what I have written. I want to read what others have written.

Or so I thought, up until recently.

Now that I think of it, how awesome is it that I can Google my own words and read my own thoughts and feelings? Pretty darn cool, I might say. I’ve always thought of this blog as a personal diary (albeit a personal diary that is open for everyone to read and that has been nicely indexed by all of the search engines). I don’t always go back and read it myself, but maybe I should. On more than one occasion, someone who has just stumbled onto my blog sends me a message telling me that they have just finished reading the entire blog, beginning to end. Maybe one day I will do the same.

I am reminded that when I start to feel lonely, the first person that I probably need to connect with is myself. And when I start to reconnect with myself, I start to reconnect with those people who play such critical roles of support in my life of chronic illness.  I realize that even though I might have felt otherwise, I never really was alone.

And for all the talk of “I” and “me” in this blog post, I can no longer deny that it takes a group effort to get through each and every day of living with this illness.

Oftentimes I hold back certain words for fear of overburdening those individuals who make a concerted effort to give me all of the support I need, despite their pleas to the contrary. I think this is an area that I need to work to improve.

I feel blessed that living with rheumatoid arthritis has shown me who I can count on for support; to these individuals I will be forever grateful. Thank you.

Do you know who you can count on?

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

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RA|QA Rheumatoid Arthritis Questions & Answers

QuestionAnonymous asks:

I have been taking Lortab 10/500 four times a day for my RA and Fibro and my doctor just prescribed a new medication called Nucynta 100mg and wants me to try that instead. Does anyone have experience with this medication? It was only FDA approved 3 months ago so I’m a little hesitant in taking it. I’ve done some research online and have read that for some people it’s wonderful and for some people it’s a nightmare (which seems to be the case with any drug, right?!). ANY information, good or bad, would be very much appreciated! Thanks!

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