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Sweet September

Here is a quick update on my RA since I have moved…

August 3rd-8th(ish), I experienced swelling in my knees due to drinking pop-that is what my previous post discusses.  I have not had any problems with my knees since then!  Other than an accidental sip of sprite-cause I thought it was water, I have not had any pop.

Over labor day weekend, for whatever reason my right pointer finger started to ache and the knuckle became swollen.  That pain lasted for about five days, but it has reverted back to a painless, non-swollen finger…thank goodness!  I am not exactly sure the reason for this most reason flare up, though thankfully it wasn’t throughout my whole body, and just in my finger.  I am assuming it was due to eating A LOT of unhealthy food over that weekend.

Tomorrow starts another week, and I am hoping and praying for minimal pain!  The weather is starting to cool off to about 75 degrees, which is when I feel most comfortable, and I think my RA is at its best during this type of weather.

Switching topics!  On Friday, while I was just finishing up nannying for the week, I was blessed with two tickets that had VERY good seats to the OSU game that was played on Saturday.  The family I nanny for was able to get box seating, so they graciously offered me their seats!  Matt and I went and had SUCH a great time!!   The Bucks won and the weather was perfect.

Nannying is going well, and I am certainly learning SO much about what it means to care for children and cater to their every need.  I’ve had several tough, mentally draining days, but I remind myself that each day is a new start!  I pray for patience often and the ability to love on them no matter what!  God has definitely allowed me to already gain experience for the future when I have children of my own.

Until next time, enjoy the fall weather!  Open your windows and let the fresh breeze in!

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Posted by on September 9, 2012 in My battle with RA

 

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The culprit

If you were to ask me how I have been feeling over the past weekend, I’d tell you I’ve been miserable.  I woke up Friday morning with a very swollen and stiff right knee.  As if that wasn’t bad enough, I woke up Saturday morning with an even stiffer and more swollen right knee.  This morning I woke up with a swollen knee AND elbows!  What is going on?!

The left leg in this picture, (which is really my right knee) is swollen.

Originally, I was certain that after playing three games of sand volleyball on Thursday evening that I over did it and possibly strained my knee which was causing the swelling.  However, when my elbows were swollen this morning I knew something else had to be the culprit of this major flare up.  I am pretty positive I have finally realized what has been causing me to have such a miserable weekend.  POP.  I’ve had pop three times over the course of four days, which I rarely drink because it’s practically poison for your body.  In the past I remember trying to link a flare up with pop but now I am positive that I do not react well to it.  I don’t really like it anyways, so I don’t have a single problem giving up pop FOREVER, especially when I feel this miserable when I drink it.  Each person with arthritis has different sources of flare ups, so pop may not affect you personally if you suffer from arthritis.

Until next time, avoid pop at all costs.

 
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Posted by on August 5, 2012 in My battle with RA

 

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Changes

Friday afternoon I said my final goodbye and moved to Westerville.  I’ve been anticipating the move for almost two months.  I can tell I am experiencing some anxiety because my arthritis is flaring up in spurts.  My knee and elbows are swollen today.  I wish I knew the exact cause of a flare up, but it seems to be due to a mixture of causes.

When I attended Bowling Green from the fall of 2009 to the spring of 2010, my arthritis was at an all-time high.  I was miserable, drained, sore, and weak.  I lost over 15 lbs. because the medication I was taking upset my stomach which lessened my appetite.  I will have to monitor my weight now that I have moved because I don’t have the privilege of having a fridge full of food at all times.

I went grocery shopping with Matt on Saturday and was successfully able to keep the cost under $50.  That was a big deal to me because I have created a budget and want to stick to it.  Since I am responsible for all of my meals, I am trying to lean towards healthier food purchases, which I hope will improve my joint soreness.

Yesterday I surprised Matt while he was at work at Starbucks.  I decided that since I would have at least 45 minutes until he was done, that I would bring my Bible and do some reading.  I chose to read from Romans chapter 3 and really liked verse 22.  “We are made right in God’s sight when we trust in Jesus Christ to take away our sins.  And we can all be saved in this same way, no matter who we are or what we have done”.  I was made right with God when I was 9 years old when I asked Him to come into my life and to lead it.  I remember giving my life to Him very clearly.  I was sitting in the kitchen having a conversation with my mom and was asking her question’s about God, Heaven, and Hell.  She explained to me how she accepted God into her life recently and told me it was my choice and that no one could make the choice for me.  Looking back, that is by far the biggest decision I have made in my life and I am forever grateful for it.  Of course the second biggest decision has been this move.

On Wednesday I will work from 9-2 with the children I will be nannying for.  I am excited to spend more time with them so they can become more comfortable around me.  I still am not confident enough to drive to their house without using a GPS because last time I tried to do so, I missed my turn and was 15 minutes late.  It has been my prayer that I will fit right into the family and that the children and I will have a strong bond.

I didn’t mean to take such a long hiatus from blogging, but up until the move, I hadn’t been in a writing mood and felt like I didn’t have much to report.  I have a feeling that will change 🙂

This is a picture of my key that got stuck in our door.  I had to call my roommate Anna to come help me get it out, but she wasn’t able to do so either.  Eventually Anna called for help from a friend named Steven, and he was able to get the key out within a minute.  Go figure.

My first Joshua House experience with Scarlet and Anna.  Joshua House is an evening church service that is geared towards “20 somethings”.  The worship was really good and the message was interesting!

Until next time, don’t get your key stuck in a door!

 
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Posted by on July 30, 2012 in My battle with RA

 

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Getting closer

There are just twenty one days left until I make the big move!  This in-between waiting period is both speeding by and sluggishly moving along.  To add some excitement, I bought a bright pink ottoman to liven up my new room and I can easily store it because it is collapsible.  I will be posting some pictures once I move in.

I have so much to look forward to, the list is lengthening and I am quite pleased with that.  Matt and I have already discussed having movie nights, bike rides, walks, you know…normal activities that we’ve been deprived of because of distance!  Only living ten minutes away from him is going to seem unreal for quite some time. I am so pleased with my living situation and I am anxious to get to personally know the other gals who I will be sharing the huge house with.

It was a pleasure to celebrate the 4th of July this year with two of my best friend’s, Bre and Cassie.  I am not sure how many more chances we are going to get to spend together once I move, but I plan on visiting “home” when possible.

On June 29th, I had the privilege of attending the wedding of two of my friend’s that I have met through campus fellowship.  They are an incredible couple and I am blessed to know them.  Derrick unfortunately wasn’t around when I had this photo taken, but I was happy to get one taken with the lovely bride, Brittany.  I decided to wear 5 inch heels, I guess I was feeling brave.  Considering I have arthritis, it probably wasn’t the wisest choice, but I only managed to walk away with one blister and zero foot or ankle pain.

In my previous post, I mentioned that I was going to be getting a 90 day supply of my medications, however, that did not go as planned.  When I picked up my medications, the pharmacy told me that the insurance I have only covers month by month.  Slightly bumming, considering it was going to make my life a bit easier.  Win some, lose some.

Maybe this isn’t as big of a deal as it seems to me, but after two year’s of sweating and dealing with it, I finally have air conditioning in my car.  I kept putting it off because of cost, but when I took it to the shop, they didn’t have to replace it.  They charged it, which I have had done before, but this time it seemed to have worked.  I am hoping and praying it isn’t a leak, I guess time will tell.

Until next time, get AC in your car, it’s worth the money.

 
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Posted by on July 6, 2012 in My battle with RA

 

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Six months is like music to my ears

Today at 3:10, I had a rheumatologist appointment.  This was only my second appt. with Dr. Lindamood, as I had transferred back in April due to distance.  Surprisingly, my name was called right away and they decided to take my blood work before I met with my rheumy.  At my previous appt., I had a bad experience after they took some blood and I was bruised for over three weeks, so when the lady was prepping to take my blood I warned her of my nerves.  She did a great job, and as of right now my arm is bruise-less!  I had been hoping for some good news today, and I am happy to report some to you!  Instead of ordering a 30 day supply of my meds, I will now be getting them on a 90 day supply which is very helpful since I will be transitioning to my new housing arrangements in Westerville in August.  My Dr. asked me the common questions such as how I was feeling since the last time we met, and I told him that overall I honestly have been doing quite well.  With that being said, I also mentioned that I will be moving but wanted to keep him as my Dr.  He said as long as I am responding well to the medications and don’t have any problems, I won’t have to see him for another six months!  My next visit is not until December 17th, which is crazy to think how close that is to snow and Christmastime, when today it reached 95 degrees.  He did say that I still need blood work taken every two months, but that I can get that done right in Westerville, and they can send him the results.  The final bit of positive news is that I am able to reduce the amount of methotrexate I am taking from six to four pills, once a week.  It was my idea that I go back down to four pills and Dr. Lindamood explained that methotrexate is a flexible drug that differs for each person.  I am pleased with the way my appt. went today!

Yesterday evening was spent with two of my best friends, Bre and Cassie.  It was so wonderful to spend time with them doing a whole bunch of nothing.  We walked around the park for over an hour and discussed how our lives were doing and where we thought they’d be going.  Below is a picture of Bre and I.

This past weekend I surprised Matt’s family by showing up unexpectedly on Father’s Day.  It was a success!  We were also able to celebrate Mary’s 22nd birthday.

38 DAYS UNTIL I MOVE!

 
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Posted by on June 19, 2012 in My battle with RA

 

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Side effects

Well, I haven’t been responding pleasantly to the methotrexate I must take each Sunday.  I’ve been experiencing pounding headaches and nausea, and hearing from two other gals who have RA, they have said it is nasty stuff.  One of them even told me that she was told to take methotrexate during the evening with fattier foods so that the food coats your stomach so you won’t have near as bad of a reaction.  She also said it’s much better to sleep off the nausea.  I will try that method and if I don’t feel any better, I will be calling my Dr.

I was able to enjoy the fantastic 80 degree weather today by taking a brisk walk this afternoon.  I was fairly sleepy after work but made myself go.  It was nice to be able to soak up some sun, especially since I am low on Vitamin D.

I am still unable to find a nanny position, but haven’t given up.  I look almost each day for new posting’s and am determined that one of them will work out eventually!  God will provide 🙂

I had such a blast this past weekend with Matt and his family.  For our one year date, Matt and I went to a hibachi Japanese grill and had such a fun time watching the chef cook our meal right in front of us.  He did some really neat tricks, and we even caught food in our mouth.  Sounds weird, but if you’ve ever been, you know what I am speaking of.  I ordered chicken teriyaki, which came with rice, noodles, cooked vegetables, clear soup, and a small salad.  I even got some super easy-to-use chopsticks!

Until next time, soak up some sun!

 
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Posted by on May 16, 2012 in My battle with RA

 

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I will wait

I believe this has been the longest I have gone without posting, and each day that has passed I have felt even more guilty for not updating!  Here you go!

Since the the last time I posted, I have been feeling well, overall.  I haven’t had to deal with soreness in the mornings that often.  On the downside, I have noticed an increase in soreness in my wrists, yes, plural.  Just today I noticed a bit of pain starting in my left wrist.  It is so difficult at times to not get discouraged when I have to add yet another pain to the list.  Yesterday afternoon I took a nap and woke up with a headache.  I am pretty sure the headache started after I ate some pasta salad that I do not normally eat.  It turned into a pounding headache by evening which also lead to nausea.  I went to bed with a bucket beside the bed in case, well, you get the point.  I also noticed that my knees were starting to ache, which would lead me to believe I am experiencing another minor flare up.  Thankfully this morning my knees seem to have improved.

I am excited to say that this Thursday I have been dating Matt for a year!  We will both be heading over to his parent’s house for the weekend, and will be joined by Matt’s brother Greg, and his wife Mary.  I always look forward to weekend’s with the Hartman’s!  Matt and I will probably dine somewhere and I am sure between the two of us we both have a few surprises to give to each other.

I wish I could say all of the details have been worked out, but at this point I can happily say that I am seeking full-time nanny jobs in Westerville.  I feel that it is time for me to move out of my parent’s house, as I will be turning 21 in August.  Moving out takes so much preparation, and I am not the kind of person who will spontaneously pack up and leave.  I have been praying extra hard over each aspect of the move.  I know plenty of wonderful girl’s in Columbus who I could potentially room with, and already have two options I can work with. The biggest road block at this point is a job.  I will not move until I know I have a job secured.  I have applied to a nanny agency, and have created an account on another reputable website where people who are looking for caretakers can view my profile.  I have faith that this all can work out, I just have to be patient and trusting.  Throughout this entire process I have never felt so vulnerable.  I am completely leaving this in God’s hands, because if I start making decisions and choices that I feel are right, I know somehow it will fail.  I am waiting for the best possible option that God will provide for me.  I’ve already grown and have learned that waiting for the best will always trump.

Until next time, may I find a full-time job as a nanny!  Nanny Becca just sounds so RIGHT 🙂

 
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Posted by on May 7, 2012 in My battle with RA

 

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