Monday, February 8, 2010


"You and I are essentially infinite choice-makers. In every moment of our existence, we are in that field of all possibilities where we have access to an infinity of choices." -- Deepak Chopra

I hit a low this weekend emotionally. My shoulders were stiff and weak, my knuckles were swollen, my feet and knee hurt and I felt emotionally and physically defeated. I asked myself, "How is it that I have put so much time and effort into healing, only to feel like I had been run over by a truck?" I cried a lot. I wanted to throw in the towel and accept that I had lost. Fortunately for me, I have friends and family that kept sending encouraging words and even more importantly for me, I have a daughter that reads me and knows just when I need my spirits lifted. Sophia somehow knew that I was ready to give up, that I had made the choice to call it quits. She knows me so well and at eleven years old, she understands a lot.

Sophia came to me Saturday night and asked me if I had given up. I tried to lie to her, but she knew. She reminded me of the good day I had last week. She reminded me of other days that were good. She reminded me how last week I got up easily from my bed. She remembers those little successes. She reminded me of the good feelings she is experiencing with diet changes. She held me and let me cry.

We all have choices. We can choose to let life and the disappointments it has in store for us take control over our mind and soul as I did that evening when I told myself that I had experienced enough and was beaten, or we can choose to take that control back and keep fighting. When you have a little girl that is backing you 100% on your journey towards health, it is pretty difficult to not make the choice to fight.

On Sunday Sophia watched me closer, I could see it. She wanted to make sure I was coming back from the dark side. She spent extra time with me, she made me laugh, she hugged me a lot and hopefully she saw my spirits returning. Hopefully she saw me making the choice to keep going, to keep working towards a body that is healthy in every way, because that is the choice I am making.


  1. Cathy,

    It must be the weather because the last week has been terrible for me. This morning, I thought my flare-up had passed, but apparently, I am still dealing with it. The temperatures in NE Ohio are in the teens and so it makes all the difference in the world when it comes to arthritis pain levels.

    I have the most wonderful ten-year old boy in the world, similar to your Sophia. She is absolutely wonderful and reading about how wonderful she is brought tears to my eyes. Our kids force us everyday to keep fighting despite how tough it gets. I have to admit that sometimes I feel guilty that my children don’t have a healthy mom and that my ten-year old sometimes has to take care of me. Then, I remember what a wonderful and loving adult he is going to be because of these experiences. I also think about the lessons he is learning and I try to feel less guilty.

    I hope today is better. Please take care of yourself.

  2. Hi Cathy - I hope you start to feel better soon. You are so strong to not be on any RA meds.

    I wish I had helpful children! I have a 17 yr old that thinks the world revolves around him and a 13 yr old girl that sometimes can be compassionate towards my condition. My hubby and I were just talking about how are kids are so self-centered. It is awesome that you have such caring children! Dont get me wrong, I love mine to death and they are good kids, but they are absorbed in themselves.

    I know what you mean about the weather. I have been reading lots of info about Vitamin D and getting sunshine. Kind of hard to do in the winter where you live!

    I am so sorry you hurt so much - know that I understand what you are going through. You will be in my prayers!

  3. There is absolutely nothing wrong with feeling beaten at times, Cathy. Dealing with this disease is extremely hard; even when it's not real active, it's always there in the background, not letting you forget that it can attack at any moment. You're incredibly brave to fight it alone and without the armor of modern drugs -- at least, I think you are. And given the possible adverse or dangerous side effects most of these drugs have -- along with the fact that they often don't help very much, if at all -- I certainly cannot criticise your decision to go without them.

    Keep in mind that even as the RA knocks you down, your body IS incredibly strong and healthy because of the tender, mindful care you've been taking in caring for it and for yourself. Had you not been doing this, you might be far worse now than you are. I think maybe you're actually winning this particular battle. You'll be battered when its over, but even stronger.

    What a lovely person your daughter is. Chip off the ol' block, eh? :o) Be well. I'm thinking about you.

  4. Hello Cathy, I think that the truck that hit you has ran over me, then keeps backing up over me just to run over me again. I think all of us with RA have had a rough time this winter. I'm so ready for spring weather.

    Sophia is a wonderful little girl, smart way beyond her years. You are fortunate to have her. That alone is worth getting up everday for.

  5. This was so, so beautiful Cathy. I know you know just know blessed you are to have those amazing kids! Hope you feel better asap xx

  6. Cathy,
    I hope you start having more good days soon. You do have wonderful, caring children who really enjoy being allowed to be there for you when they can.

  7. I'm a new reader here. I just wanted to say that last week I had two crying jags where I also wanted to give up. Sometimes things just become to hard to bear. I don't have a child at home but I do have grandchildren and just looking at their photos and thinking of how my husband would cope without me made me change my mind. It was just one of those weeks I think when multiple things were going wrong. You are obviously a very strong person...ciao

  8. Cathy,

    I'm so glad you aren't giving up. It is so tempting sometimes just to give in to the pain and exhaustion and let it take over. Occasionally it just seems to really hit me, and all I want to do is cry.

    You are such an inspiration to so many of us. Particularly for me, you show me that it can be possible for me to be a good Mom one day, even with a chronic illness. What a smart, sensitive and empathetic daughter you have, and what a wonderful reason to keep going despite the pain.

    Gentle hugs,


  9. I am so sad that your days have been rough lately. Reading this made me cry tears just imagining all you go through, but then to have such a beautiful loving daughter to comfort you is so precious. Many healing hugs to you, Cathy.

  10. I have a post up at my blog that I would love to get your opinion on. If you have a chance, can you swing by and take a looks? Thanks!


  11. Hi Cathy, I am just wondering how you are. I notice you haven't blogged for a while and can see you've been suffering. Just to say i hope things are OK, i'm thinking of you and you know now to reach me if you need an ear.xx