During every *major* flare, such as the one that I’ve been in for the past week, there come a point when–even though I don’t know how long it’s going to take for the flare to run its full course–I start telling myself how well I am doing. Yes, I know that my mind is ahead of my body, in terms of recovering from the damage of the past few days, and I know that my body is definitely still in a lot of pain (an understatement, if ever there was one)…but I have the feeling, that confidence, that no matter what the next few days might bring, I’ve more than likely–once again–gotten through the worst.
And on days like today, I really do (at least emotionally) feel good…and I’m convinced that this state of mind is going to help me pull through this flare just a little more quickly than I otherwise would.
Strangely optimistic words for someone who only 36 hours ago experienced pain of such severity, that he thought he was literally just going to keel over. And while such a thing obviously did not happen, I did have a stumble (not so much of a trip…it was more of a “my body just completely gave out” moment) that would have been much nastier had I not been standing right next to my bed at that moment.
I find myself in a really good mood at the moment, not only because I woke up with a feeling that today might be the day when I once again connected with a sense of good health, but also because two items early in my day confirmed that I was indeed correct in holding such thoughts.
First, even though I’m still in as much pain as I was yesterday, I’m not doing any worse…and it’s this second part that counts for right now…because I think we all know that during those moments when it feels like there is no way the pain can get any worse, it often does. Having gone through this cycle more than once over the past few days, it’s nice to wake up and feel like things are stabilizing a bit. This gives me the hope that things will indeed continue to get better in the coming days. It also gives me a much needed break, and allows me to finally catch my breath from the maddening downward spiral that is a flare.
The second reason why I’m feeling so good is because today I met a personal weight loss goal! I had originally given myself six weeks to lose 5 kilos (11 pounds). In the end, I only needed just under a month to do so. I certainly wasn’t majorly overweight, but I have definitely been carrying around a few extra pounds that were not helping any when my entire body was flaring, or even on more “average” days when I walk around with my crutches. My rheumatologist commented as much a month ago, during my last visit. I assured him that the next time he saw me, I would indeed be weighing less. And the timing of meeting my weight loss goal is extra-sweet because my next appoint with my rheumatologist is this afternoon!
So yes, I’m still in a major flare, but I’m already looking forward to the day when the pain and inflammation levels subside. My mind will continue to respect my body and what it continues to go through…but my mind will also do its best to gently try to guide my body back to a place of improved health.
Stay tuned…for the next adventure of Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy!