A moment’s reprieve. That is all but short of asking for the world.

When you have a rheumatic flare up, it can be agony! It can be torturous! Not in the sense you might think of when being in pain, but rather the limitations that this pain can bring about. The frustration at just being able to do the things you were so happily doing with ease the day before. The word ‘disabled’ comes to mind. A frightening word, and one that shouldn’t be used so lightly. I suppose that was being a little over melodramatic, but sometimes it really does feel that way. There have been days where I would struggle to even pull my clothes on, and nights where I could not sleep because the pain is keeping me up. So far I have been fortunate that my current dose of medication has been sufficient to control my flare ups. Also, when I do have flare ups I tend to recover quicker than before having started medication. That is not to say I enjoy taking my medication. It doesn’t taste foul per se, but rather I find it…unnatural. As unnatural as a knee bending in the wrong direction. After all, medication isn’t exactly the stuff of Sunday roasts nor Michelin starred meals.

These last 4 months have been a curious learning experience. I have traveled to Japan, I have served at youth camps, I have listened to numerous inspirational talks and shows in search for answers and direction in life, I have continued to work, and in the end I am still here. Hopefully wiser. As cliched as it sounds, these last 4 months have taught me to chase my dreams more and to basically just enjoy life. Very bog standard boring advice you hear all the time from the people around you. Except a lot of the times it seems like short term advice. Advice which doesn’t help you plan ahead if you intend to live longer than people expect. Honestly speaking, these last 4 months have taught me to be more pragmatic, more realistic, and to give my own future more consideration. I know that while my hands and legs can still carry me, I should pursue life’s joys like eating, travelling, meeting new people, climb mountains, do extreme sports, save the world etc.

But the most humbling thought came when you start asking yourself, what to do when my hands and legs can no longer carry me. What then? When I am writhing in pain and can barely pull my clothes on, what then…? When I can no longer work to support myself and my family, what then? What then…must I do now to protect my future when the present mind set is to borrow from one’s future to enable their current luxuries?

 

~OnlyRen

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14/08/14 Two weeks since diagnosis…

Two weeks since diagnosis…

I am alive!! Ha ha! Arthritis was never a major life or death condition to begin with, but I do understand other sufferers better now. Its not exactly easy to go through life when you are having a flare up. Especially when you may not necessary have the support from friends and family. When you may not necessarily have a caring but nagging mum to constantly worry for you and force you to live healthier.

For the  most part, I can carry on life as normal. It isn’t all doom and gloom. You wake up, you do your everyday kind of things, you eat your everyday kind of foods, and you dream your every night sort of dreams. Maybe I can say this now because I am not at some of the more severe and extreme cases that I have read/heard about. Still, it is good to be alive. You appreciate what you do have and not look so much at what you don’t have.

 

A friend shared this quote written by Pastor J.S. Park (who also has a blog on wordpress):

“If you’re suffering right now, you don’t have to pretend it’s all good. You don’t have to add, ‘But praise God.’ When Jesus was hours from crucifixion, he didn’t sing in the garden or act hyper-spiritual. He was sweating blood. He asked the Father for a way out. But Jesus ultimately went to that cross with joy: not a shallow consolation that knows no pain, but a joy deepened by sorrow and recognizing the hurt of humanity. God is always trying to make you more human and not less. You can cry out in agony. In that honesty, God is establishing great character in you. Such a Christian is both happier and sadder at the same time, because they long for a better home and already have one.”

J.S.

 

It’s OK to be human. It is OK and perfectly normal to be upset when things in life don’t necessarily go the way you intend or want it to go. You don’t have to pretend that it was for the good of some greater plan, or pretend to be joyful about it. If anything, cry your hearts out! And most importantly, be humbled by your bad experience(s). In humility, you learn to love greatly. In humility, you learn to see and notice the things that really matter in your life. You stop trying to succeed at the things that don’t matter.

 

Two weeks since diagnosis…I learnt that I don’t want to waste my life with the trivial things. I may not be dying in the terminal illness sense, but I want want my life to be significant – I want to add value to other people’s lives.