Hi, welcome to The Arthritis Fight! I hope this website can provide you with valuable information and tools in order to better cope with the pain of chronic inflammation, let’s fight back and regain control of our health and life!
8th November 2013, it was a Friday and I was at work, my last day before my week off which I would be spending decorating mine and my partners first home.
If I’m honest I wasn’t that excited about the prospect of decorating but looking back now I would have happily got my brushes and rollers out as soon as I finished work if I knew then what I know now.
You see I wouldn’t get that decorating done, not that week or even that year! On that Friday morning at approximately 9:30am I suffered an accident breaking my leg and my ankle in 2 places.
I won’t go into all the details but at one point that day sat in the accident and emergency department at the hospital, I faced the prospect of losing my foot as the breaks had caused blood flow to stop reaching my foot.
Alas, I still have the foot and by that I mean it’s still attached not I have it in a jar on the mantle piece. Though there have been times over the last 4 years I have wondered if my life would be better if it had been amputated back then.
I only say that because due to the severity of the injury and other complications I developed osteoarthritis in my ankle, which many people will know is not a pleasant disease to live with. Many of you reading will have some form of arthritis or have a loved one who is suffering or will at least know of somebody living with the pain of the disease.
When it was diagnosed the surgeon told me the usual and commonly heard lines such as it CAN’T be cured, it WILL get worse and you WILL need more surgery in later life.
As you can imagine I was in shock of the positivity seeping out of him…not!
I was offered an ankle fusion as my arthritis was already quite severe and fusion was the only thing that would eliminate the pain, I had read about this surgery and didn’t like the thought of going through it at that point in my life. I am not disregarding the operation and I know some people have had success with an ankle fusion I also know that some haven’t.
The surgeon had told me to control my weight and take vitamin D and Calcium tablets to help the bones strengthen again. This bit of advice led me on a quest to discover and try anything that might help ease the pain and give me back a better quality of life!
Positive Mindset = Positive Action
Don’t get me wrong I’m not saying you can wish this disease away because we would all be disease free if that was the case, I’m not even saying arthritis can be cured, all I am saying is tell yourself you can beat it and you will overcome it.
I truly feel that you have to have this mindset in order to give yourself that chance and I know it isn’t easy especially when winter rolls around and the cold weather plays havoc with the affected joints, but I look at it this way…
In four years my symptoms have got better, I normally look at it on a year-on-year basis because as people will know it can be fairly pain free some weeks or months and then play up significantly.
That can be caused by obvious things such as over doing it, banging the joint, cold weather or even less obvious ones such as diet and what you have recently eaten or how much sleep you have had.
Arthritis is called a degenerative disease, meaning it gets worse with time. I want to repeat my previous statement in four years my symptoms have got better!
Am I curing myself?
Am I finding a way to cope with the pain, be able to do more things and taking back some control of my life?
You better believe it!
To give you information from things I have read and things I use that help me fight back against this condition. I still have dark days when there’s pain and I’m restricted and its then that I focus on what I can do now.
I work which involves weight bearing, a fair amount of walking (including up and down steps), to an average person reading I know that doesn’t seem impressive but to fellow sufferers I think you will understand that everyday tasks like this can be a real chore.
It shows we often take our body for granted until the body breaks down and we regret not enjoying the most simple and basic things in life like!
Going for a long walk, a run or dancing, I used to detest running, now its one of the things I want to do most and believe I WILL do, we ALL can!
Let’s do this!
All the best,
P.S. I got my decorating done.