In An Instant I Was 100

January 2018 I awoke with a shoulder that hurt so badly I was certain it was a knife stuck in it.

Shoulder pain triggered by rheumatoid arthritis

Left shoulder. Ow. Ow. Ow. I knew I needed to see a doctor, so I went to a clinic-like place. I had no primary doctor. Without a blood test, the conclusion could not be reached as to the cause. I had insurance but I didn't realize it.

I was newly married, so I was unsure about my coverage. Sounds silly, but out-of-pocket costs will set a person back financially. I was given two shots--one for pain and prednisone. They made me nauseous. I know now stress is a trigger and I was up to my eyeballs with family stress. The parallel must be mentioned because they did not believe I was really ill. They believed; as they always did; that I was putting on and acting dramatic and spoiled since I was a newlywed. Ha!

When a caregiver's health deteriorates

I trudged through 2018 with transient pain which was excruciating. Meanwhile, my husband's health failed and he was unable to work. Again the fam came to the conclusion that my new husband was just sorry and lazy. Stress, stress, stress with zero support.

By 2019 he got his medical miracle and improved. While he was hospitalized I struggled tremendously to move and be there for him. But I did it. The family took this opportunity to end our relationship. I was in my most vulnerable moment and they struck--but it was okay. Their removal from my life was the removal of a stressor I could no longer tolerate. They unwittingly did me a major favor. Stress reduction is key to relieving rheumatoid issues.

Pain treatment for rheumatoid arthritis

My husband got better and better and encouraged me to look forward to living my life. My brand new life. I did. I tried everything in the book to help with my then undiagnosed mystery pain, but to no avail. I finally went to see about it late 2020. And now? I'm seeing a rheumatologist who has started me on Arava. So far so good. A tiny bit of stomach issues but I'm fine. I'm also taking prednisone as needed. I'm still stiff and in pain. I'm just two weeks on the Arava, but I see sunshine on the horizon. That's why I'm Tin Man Gal. I need a little help, but I'll improve.

Life can improve with rheumatoid arthritis

Believe me when I say this - life will get better. I went through some harrowing times with a wing and a prayer but it was always more than enough. My family had never supported me even as a healthy person, so I know doggone well they would be nothing but an impediment to my healing.

My miracle was that my husband's medical emergency triggered them to do the most vicious thing they could have done in the way they betrayed and abandoned me all the while freeing me from the daily stress I was enduring. I now relax fully. I'm no longer braced for impact. And THAT my friends is the beginning to healing. Removing the roadblocks, seeking medical help, not living in the past, and looking forward to remission from this gift called rheumatoid arthritis; because without it I would never have put myself first for the first time in my life.

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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