As some of you may know, the past few months it has been one thing after the other around here. We had one person after the next with the swine flu; all the while I have been dealing with the effects of lyme disease and rheumatoid arthritis with no RA meds. The doctor took me off the medication so that the Tamiflu stood a chance of helping get rid of the H1N1 virus that had overtaken my house. All that was fine and as far as I can tell worked well, but the consequence of all this is that my hands are really swollen and painful once again. On top of my hands being swollen, painful and holding on to anything is next to impossible, the effects of the lyme disease have left me with unbelievable fatigue and muscle soreness.
I have done my best to just accept that for the time being this is what my reality is and I know that it is a temporary situation. I am usually pretty good at dealing with this sort of thing because I know that it is out of my hands. There is only so much I can do right now. I am drinking water like it is going out of style. I am staying away from my known trigger foods and Lord knows I have been getting a lot of sleep. I have been meditating and exercising the joints that aren’t painful. I am doing everything I know to do to improve the quality of my life and yet it is still very hard.
Yesterday I fell apart. I am really not sure exactly what set me off. Was it my husband asking “Why are your hands so swollen?” which to me seemed like the dumbest question ever. Was it when my son innocently asked me to play a game of badminton outside with him? I would have loved to play but my hands couldn’t grip the racket. Was it when I was attempting to make breakfast and I couldn’t even crack the eggs and needed to ask for help? Maybe it was all of that and more. I suppose it really doesn’t matter what set me off, but I just started crying.
What started as a trickle streaming down my cheek turned out to be an all out torrent of tears. For the next hour I cried, I blubbered, I wept and I felt really sorry for myself. This disease is so hard, sometimes harder than I can often put into words. It takes me away from all that I want to do sometimes. It is painful and when I am in pain I am not my real self. It distracts me from what I truly want to be doing. Sometimes, and yesterday in particular, it feels like it is something separate from me that is demanding my focus, demanding my attention. Like a spoiled child that will do whatever it takes to get what it wants. And so with my mounting frustration and anger and pain, I cried. And I cried. And I cried. And then I cried some more.
And when I had gone thought the better part of a box of tissue and I felt as though I had no more tears I cried a little more. After a good long time of wallowing in my self pity, I started to feel better. I really think I just needed to get rid of some of the frustration and anger and sadness. I felt it all and had cried it all out of me. I can’t begin to express how much better I feel.
My hands are still swollen and I am typing this with three fingers, but I feel so much better. I had forgotten that when the disease was new and the emotions that come with it were new, every once in a while I would have a good old fashioned pity party. I wouldn’t want it to be a very long party, but every once in a while, when the disease got the better of me I would just let it all out and I always felt better. I wanted to share this so if you are feeling like I did maybe a good cry will help you feel better like I do.