I Already Gave My Right Arm To Be Ambidextrous...Now Read My HIPS!

Now Read My HIPS! is returning very soon. My blog is currently under construction. I am doing some minor renovating and will begin blogging for the New Year, possibly before. I can't wait to start up again. I have missed all of my followers! I love every single one of you! You have helped me to become who I am today! I could never have continued my blog without all of your support. Please be patient, and please continue to support this blog as well as my other blog Chronically Mommy. Pass this information on to anyone that you know may be interested in knowing...To be continued...

I had my shoulder and both hips replaced, and I am changing things up a bit on this blog! I began belly dancing in 2010! Yes you read that correctly!! I am going to be blogging about my experience as a woman with several joint diseases and conditions who had her shoulder and both hips replaced who now belly dances and performs! I still have pain, but I want to blog about how I have fun too! Now Read My HIPS! Please read Chronically Mommy (chronicallymommy.blogspot.com) for info on health/pain.

Hi, I have avascular necrosis in my shoulders, hips, and knees, psoriatic arthritis, sjogren's, fibromyalgia, and hypermobility. I found out that I have autoimmune arthritis in my cervical spine and a bulging disk in my lumbar spine. Seven years ago my spine orthopaedic surgeon told me I had a small amount of autoimmune arthritis in my SI joint. The question still remains: Is the spinal involvement due to Psoriatic Spondylitis, which is a more severe form of Psoriatic Arthritis or is it a new diagnosis of Ankylosing Spondylitis? Whatever the diagnosis, the treatment will remain the same. I had my left hip replaced in 2003 & my right shoulder replaced in March of 2010. I literally gave my right arm to be ambidextrous! LOL! Lastly, I had my right hip replaced on May 10th, 2012.

I began belly dancing. Yes that's correct! I began belly dancing in 2010, so now it is time to "read my hips." Pain is still another part of my life. It is just a question of when, where and how much, but I would like to use this blog to write about my experience as a woman with several joint diseases and conditions who had both hips and a shoulder replaced and now spends her free time belly dancing and performing! I belong to a dance troupe since February of 2014, Seshambeh Dance Company. I am dancing weekly with my troupe in an advanced class and on Saturdays with another class which focuses on exercise and being a strong woman. I am performing a lot more often now, at least 4 or 5 times per year! Join me in my journey!

At times, I take 16 to 20 pills a day. I go every 4 weeks to the to get a 2 hour IV for my autoimmune arthritis diseases. Just when one thing seems to be doing better, something else goes downhill! My attitude, however, is always going uphill! I am 42 years old, have been married 16 years, and my husband and I adopted Mick in Dec. of 2010! I have a lot on my plate right now, but I take it one moment at a time. I believe that God will never give me more than I can handle. However, I do need to learn to ask for help sometimes instead of always doing it by myself!



(Formerly "I Already Gave My Right Arm To Be Ambidextrous!")

Help, I need somebody,
Help, not just anybody,
Help, you know I need someone, help.

When I was younger, so much younger than today,
I never needed anybody's help in any way.
But now these days are gone, I'm not so self assured,
Now I find I've changed my mind and opened up the doors.

Help me if you can, I'm feeling down
And I do appreciate you being round.
Help me, get my feet back on the ground,
Won't you please, please help me.

And now my life has changed in oh so many ways,
My independence seems to vanish in the haze.
But every now and then I feel so insecure,
I know that I just need you like I've never done before.

Help me if you can, I'm feeling down
And I do appreciate you being round.
Help me, get my feet back on the ground,
Won't you please, please help me.

When I was younger, so much younger than today,
I never needed anybody's help in any way.
But now these daya are gone, I'm not so self assured,
Now I find I've changed my mind and opened up the doors.

Help me if you can, I'm feeling down
And I do appreciate you being round.
Help me, get my feet back on the ground,
Won't you please, please help me, help me, help me, oh.

Now Read My HIPS!

Now Read My HIPS!
Asmara "Beautiful Butterfly"

Blog with Integrity

BlogWithIntegrity.com

Monday, September 20, 2010

OMG! You're Gonna Stick That Needle Where?


The theme of the 13th Chronic Babe's Blog Carnival is: how do you handle a crisis? There are always times when things go terribly wrong with your health or a personal issue no matter how hard you try to take care of yourself. In this blog carnival, we are going to blog about how we prepare for such turn of events, how we cope in the middle of everything, and how we recover from it.

A crisis is a crucial or decisive point or situation; a turning point, an unstable condition, involving an impending abrupt or decisive change, a sudden change in the course of a disease or illness, toward either improvement or deterioration, an emotionally stressful event or traumatic change in a person's life, a point when a conflict reaches its highest tension and must be resolved. Synonyms for crisis are: crossroad, head, juncture, pass.

This is a very easy topic for me because I'm in somewhat of a crisis right now with my health. I was doing really well, and had begun to go to the gym to an aqua aerobics class 3 times a week, swim, and picked up a dance/movement class called Nia. I have also been doing beginner's yoga/pilates, light aerobics, and light weight training at home with workout videos. I really was really great--well for me; it's all relative. And just as quickly as I began feeling well and taking advantage of it, I started feeling tired, fatigued and having pain and stiffness. Yes, it's true; I had begun to have a flare two weeks ago, and I haven't hit the upward swing yet.

For me, I can live with the pain, but the fatigue is killing me. When I wake up in the morning, which is bright and early--about 6:30 or 7:30 a.m.--I have so much fatigue that I literally cannot physically get myself out of bed for four to six hours. That is a lot of time that I am losing each day, which is adding extra stress to my life. Of course, this isn't anything that unusual for me. I tend to have ups and downs all the time with my many chronic diseases. I just have to take it a little slower and easier for a while, and slowly increase what I do each day until I am back to my normal activity schedule.  But for some reason, this time around, I have had a flare with my fibromyalgia, sjogren's, and psoriatic arthritis. To top it off, I only have my period every three months, and this is the month that I will have my period, so I am also PMSing! I have psoriasis on my scalp, I am having muscle spasms, fatigue, bowel and bladder spasms, headaches/migraines, forgetfulness and confusion, and extremely dry mouth and eyes. I ended up getting a new prescription steroid foam for my scalp. I am on a new medication for my fibromyalgia--Savella. I began taking a migraine medication again--Topamax. I had to go to my eye doctor because of scleritis. I had silicone tear duct plugs placed in my eyes two days ago to help to keep what little tear production I have on the surface of my eyes.

Basically, for me, I have to always anticipate that a crisis with my health could be awaiting me around the next corner. It is one of the main reasons why I cannot go back to work because I could need another joint replacement at any moment. After all, that is how this whole blogging thing got started in the first place. I had my right shoulder replaced in March, and although I knew that both shoulders were in extremely bad shape, I would have never thought that my shoulder would collapse ahead of my other hip or one of my knees. And yet, it did. If I had taken a job here in Atlanta, I would have had to quit by now, and we hadn't even been here four years.  So as you can see, planning and foreshadowing what could and will happen next is the only way that I can live my life. So I have a doctor for every single part of my body. I plan trips accordingly. I make sure that I get my Remicade infusion just before a trip so I have more energy. I make sure that I get all my prescriptions filled before I leave to go out of town. I check out every new symptom immediately, and everything that has changed as soon as possible even if I think it might not be anything at all.

This is important because with my eyes for example, I made an appointment with my cornea specialist when I felt like I was getting a sore on my cornea. I have a history of uveitis, iritis and scleritis because of the sjogren's and the psoriatic arthritis. My eyes have been especially dry lately, and I have had to use not only the Restasis twice a day, but also artificial tears during the day and eye ointment to lubricate my eyes at night. Well since May, they have been exceptionally dry, but in the last couple weeks, they have been scratchy, sore, the vision was a bit blurry and even looked as though they had a spot on each one of their white areas. So I felt it was time to see the doctor. It turned out that they were much drier than they were previously in May. They did have a spot on each eye in the sclera, or white part, and the doctor ended up placing silicone tear duct plugs in each eye right there in the office chair. I didn't know they did it right there. She came back in the exam room with a tray, gloves and a needle and the instrument to place the plugs. I said "you're gonna put that needle where?" She actually put a needle into the tear duct to numb it and then placed the plug into the tiny tear duct in the right eye, and then the left eye. I WAS SCARED OUT OF MY MIND! I was at the appointment all by myself, and at that moment, I wished that Jim was there to hold my hand. I kept thinking, "what if she slips?" It went without any problems. She told me that if this didn't work, they would have to place a specially designed contact to cover the white part of my eye only to keep it moist, or to take the serum from my blood and use it as my own natural tears to keep my eyes lubricated, or the last resort is a cornea transplant if all else fails. For now, I am using my Restasis four times a day instead of two, artificial tears and gel tears during the day, as well as the eye ointment to lubricate my eyes while I sleep. I need to wear large sunglasses to keep the wind and sun out of my eyes and avoid breezes--stay away from fans and vents. It's scary stuff, and I'm not even sure that what's been done so far is helping.

I believe that being ahead of the game, knowing that a flare or anything else unexpected could be awaiting around any corner up ahead, is the only way to live my life. I keep a journal, and write everything in it about how I feel that day--pain, fatigue, and symptoms. I usually can see a pattern just before all hell breaks loose. I did notice that at first I was able to exercise 30 to 60 minutes 5 days a week with no problems except my normal pain issues. I began eating better and going to bed at a more reasonable time. So the exercise caused me to be more healthy in other aspects in my life, and in turn I felt more healthy, so I exercised even more. But then I began to slow down, I was able to notice the fatigue first in my journal, so I took it easy on the exercise, and I took some of it out for the week so that I wasn't overdoing it. Then I noticed that my sleep pattern got messed up again, which caused me to have more pain, and then which in turn made me begin to start eating at odd hours. It is a never-ending circle of events.

Hopefully, if we can get the scleritis and dry eye situation under control, I think that I am on my way out of this crisis though. Today, even on a methotrexate day, I played kickball, and yesterday was my aqua aerobics class. So I was able to do a couple days of exercise in a row, and I'm getting my blog post finished on time--well let's hope--for the blog carnival!

Walk Team

Walk Team

2012

2012

2012

2012

Belly Dance

Belly Dance
Before the Performance 5/6/12
Watch live streaming video from arthritisfoundation at livestream.com