Friday, January 20, 2012

An RA update and hoping I don't jinx myself

**Disclaimer** I do not advocate that you make any changes in your own routine without consulting your physician.  

I have a confession to make.  Due to timing issues, I have not had an Orencia infusion since October.  After that infusion, the next would have been over Thanksgiving weekend-  after that I was crazy busy at work and then came Christmas and then I was in Rush.  I have kept up on my Tramadol as well as the Flexeril and Neurontin that I take for my fibro but it's been almost 3 mos since the last infusion.  I believe that means the drug is well gone from my system.  When I realized that I would miss the first infusion, I was a little nervous.  When I realized that I would miss the second- I was a little scared.  By the third, I was in an "Oh Crap!" state of mind, especially since it coincided with the time of year when I am working 10-16 hours a day for several weeks.  And then I noticed something; 

The giant flare that I have been expecting?  It hasn't reared its ugly head yet.  Note I say YET.  The longer I go, the more I worry that it is going to sneak up on me and kick me right in the butt.  That said- I feel terrific.  I feel better- in terms of my RA- than I have in just over a year.  Yes- the RA is still there and I still have morning stiffness and evening achyness and though it's given me reminders when I overdo- generally I feel that it's just hiding there, waiting for its moment to pounce. I didn't even end up having to use my cane after all of those long days running around, lifting boxes and wearing myself out.  That's the first time in a couple of years!  If anything, this has given me more awareness in the difference in the way my body feels between the RA and the Fibromyalgia.  

As for the Fibro- whooo-boy is it still talking to me.  My muscles have hollered loud and clear to let me know that I am still in the grips of that particular illness.  My back still devils me from neck to pelvis on a daily basis, the chronic fatigue is still ever-present.  All of the muscles across the body feel like a bad toothache but I can live with it since the joints are not joining that symphony as much as usual.  I also feel that if I were able to make it to my yoga class (or had the discipline to do it at home) that I have missed due to my work schedule since Thanksgiving- even my fibro might settle down a bit.  I know for certain that when I make it to the Y to go to my yoga class and spend time in the therapy pool, the pain in my muscles eases to a dull throb.  

So my "plan" is simple.  I have my next appointment with my rheumatologist in February.  Assuming I have no RA flare (knock wood) between now and then, I will talk to her about NOT going back on the Orencia- not going back on anything- until such time as my body tells me that it's time.  Tuesday I am going back to my yoga class and am planning to go early so I can do some time in the hot tub end of the therapy pool as well.  I am also going to look at my schedule and see when else I can carve out time to go back the therapy pool and do some exercising in that pool.  I am also going to try again to....wait for it....quit smoking. I have a cache of the "electronic" cigarettes ready to go.  This will help me ease into it rather than going cold turkey because I tend to get REALLY ugly when I go cold turkey.  In the mornings, my no smoking plan is to get out there,  rain or shine, and take a walk while my coffee brews.  That I am going to start this weekend so I can make it a habit.  I have my iPhone ready- my music loaded on and earbuds waiting, sweats (with pockets) that are comfy to sleep in so I can just get up and go.  I have sneakers pulled out and ready to be put on.  The goal is that by 45 (which is FLYING toward me) I will be smoke free and still off the "big" meds.  

I just hope that by finally "talking" about it- I don't jinx myself!  

Happy Friday everyone! 


abcsofra said...

Wow, wonder why the ra is doing so good with no med? Weird but heck...hooray! I say celebrate any victory against old ra. And I really do wish you luck on stopping smoking. It can be a hard thing to do as I know...I did it years ago. One can slip back now and then but keep at it. Even if you slip, try and try again. You WILL eventually get it done. Have faith in yourself!

Pain Free...One Day said...

Good luck with you two goals! I quit smoking for the "final" time 13 years ago by being hypnotized. It worked like a charm, tried the cold turkey and tapering off in the past and ended up smoking again.
I pray that you can stay off the "hard" RA meds. Sending gentle hugs.

Julie Faulds said...

Thanks for the encouragement ladies! Congrats that your quitting smoking stuck! I am working toward it. I need to find that "thing" that will do the trick for me.