Monday, 27 September 2010

Uncertain future

I'm off work for the next 4 days at least. I can't cope with struggling this week, with hobbling around and putting on a brave face. I need a rest. I need to try and think everything through and face what it will mean if I do get this diagnosis next week. All I can think of at the moment is what I am missing out on, what I am unable to do now and how much it will affect my future as a mum. I don't want to stand at the edge looking in on the fun, like I was on Saturday's family outing to Folly Farm. The one time I tried climbing on the wooden climb frame to make sure Poppy didn't fall off the other end I got stuck up there as to step down is so painful, let alone to jump off something. I was relegated to photgraphing the day, instead of being a part of it.

The running machine is a constant, silent, lurking reminder that I can't run. Jog. Walking barely. Hubby hung clothes on it the weekend and I felt so angry at him. Just the machine being there is depressing enough without it being used as a clothes hanger, like everyone teased me about before I bought it. The Swansea bay 10k race was this weekend too. I know I couldn't enter because we had guests but knowing that I wouldn't have been able to run it anyway was another poke in the ribs.

Sewing and needlework, projects that I have half-formed in my head, are now also put on hold as my hands are so swollen that doing fine movements will antagonise the joints even more. Another hobby out of reach.

The more I research rheumatoid arthritis online, the more convinced I am that this is what my problem is. There are new diagnostic criteria for 2010 from the American rheumatologists and I fit it. Am I being a hypochondriac? Who knows. I do know that I am not making up any signs or symptoms to fit what I read, but after all I am no expert. I just remember that lecture at University on the subject and meeting an actual patient with RA, the class asking questions on how her life is affected, and her hands. Most of all her hands. Twisted, warped, knarled hands where the joints swell and distort and fingers bend inwards. Ugly hands. I've always had nice hands, pretty hands, good nails. I don't want such an outward sign of being ill. I don't want to be ill. I don't want to take medications that have hideous side effects, not being able to drink, blood tests, monitoring, clinic visits...I just want to be a normal wife and mother who doesn't need help changing a nappy or opening a bottle of coke.

Sunday, 19 September 2010


That one word describes my mood quite well. After such a fab weekend last week with hubby being off and having a night out together, this weekend has been total shite. Worked yesterday morning then had to amuse Poppy and me for a whole day whilst feeling like I wanted to curl up and hide under the duvet instead. Managed to drag us both to the local wildfowl centre and look at the birds, do a craft activity, then console myself with that perhaps my mood would improve during Poppy's nap. But then she wouldn't take one. After babbling to herself for almost an hour, interspersed with some very loud screams, I gave up. Thankfully she was happy to potter about with toys while I just lay on the couch and tried to summon up some dregs of energy, something, anything...Poppy bless her tried to get my attention for something and pulled on one of my fingers which shot excruciating pain into the joint and through my hand, and made me cry. How am I going to get through work this week? My body aches all the time, escalating to stabbing pain if I put pressure somewhere sore or stay too long in one position and then move. This is why I'll be paying privately to see someone who can tell me what the hell is going on, I can't wait months with this restriction on my life.

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Confirmed anaemic

Blood test results confirmed that I am anaemic and one of the inflammatory markers is raised. Not enough blood was taken to give a result for the second marker so have to have more taken. Got iron tablets for the anaemia, although I had no idea that I was due a prescription as the Co-Op pharmacy van just dropped a bag off with the tablets in and a leaflet about iron supplements. Great communication from the GP's as usual.

Went back to see the GP again today, after the iron delivery, as when I woke up this morning due to Poppy waking for milk I couldn't make a fist or completely straighten my fingers as they were so swollen. This really worried me, thank goodness hubby was home to get up and sort her out for me. After giving me another blood form she said to go back to the original painkillers, and again warned me that sometimes they never know what's causing it and it goes away on its own. Not much help to me when I can hardly carry Poppy down the stairs or change her nappy.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Walking like I'm 80 again

The joint pains are back with a vengeance. After about 6 months of it being manageable with anti-inflammatories it's worse than it's been in ages, even with the medication. Cue more blood tests, change in tablets and some co-codamol so that I can sleep better without my hands waking me up with the pain. My GP was lovely about it but did say in some cases they never get to the bottom of what's causing it, which is pretty much what the rheumatologist said back in March. Sneaked a peek at my blood test results before leaving work and the one's that were back do show inflammation, I'm slightly anaemic, and my white blood cells are raised. Ho hum. We'll see how long it takes the surgery to contact me to come back in.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Baking spree

Poppy is back to sleeping better again now, thank god, but have decided that instead of blogging and facebooking every day I'll chill out a bit. Spend time with my husband instead of sat next to him on the couch, half watching a tv programme while typing away on this laptop. Instead I plan to close the computer and settle down to enjoy a cwtch over on his side of the sofa, and actually concentrate on the tv we're meant to be watching together.

A quick catch up seeing as he's on nights tomorrow. Had a lovely weekend involving a birthday party for my friend's daughter and a reunion of the Boob Club mothers and babies/toddlers. Poppy was kept amused the whole time and was happy, therefore I was also happy.

It's our 5th wedding anniversary tomorrow. Hard to believe it's been 5 years already! My parents have Poppy overnight and we're going out to dinner (complete with a new dress for me) and then out for a few drinks. Not sure what our night will be like as have heard mixed reviews of the restaurant and Llanelli is not the hottest night spot around, but just a night together with alcohol and no baby to worry about getting up for will be bliss.

After buying a book on cupcakes and muffins in the book club at work, I baked blueberry muffins and apple & blackberry muffins. Very tasty. Well, hubby and I thought so even if Poppy refused to eat a blueberry one. I baked 24 of the damn things so I will keep trying her with them, they're safely into the freezer except for a few to see us through the weekend.

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

I am still alive, just about

I haven't posted in forever. Poppy is not sleeping well currently and with having to work it has hit me hard. Each day feels like I have to just get through it until bedtime, where I sink into my pillow and then get woken up all night. And have to do it all again the next day. Yuck. As you can probably tell my mood is suffering and I am struggling along, despite some good days and good times such as a friend's wedding over the Bank Holiday and a visit to my Aunt and Uncle in Newport 10 days ago. But the overwhelming feeling that pervades everything is tiredness and dread of the night time.