What Arthritis Pain Feels Like

In October 2015, I had the opportunity to contribute to an article titled “What Arthritis Pain Feels Like” for EveryDayHEALTH . I just recently looked back at some of the things I shared in that piece and unfortunately, not much has changed. Here’s an excerpt.

Rheumatoid arthritis can be like the old “box of chocolates” adage — you never know what you’re going to get, according to blogger Katie Stewart, 34, of Austin, Texas. Stewart was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis when she 23 years old. “Sometimes it feels like burning, other times it feels like throbbing — throbbing so bad that you can’t think about anything else,” Stewart explains. “There are times I’ve almost considered wanting to cut off a foot or a hand, the pain is so excruciating.”

But there are also good days when the pain seems to ebb. “When I feel good, I do yoga, run, and go about life like I don’t know what RA is,” she adds.

Regardless of how you’re feeling on any particular day, make positivity your constant. Seriously! Do yourself a favor, and try to stay positive. Every time you feel like you’re going to hell and back, try to remind yourself that “this too shall pass” and eventually, it will.

Here’s to hoping y’all have a little more ebb in your life.


Unbroken – A Poem by Karen Burch

I just came across this poem on RA Warrior’s facebook page and had to share. It is beautiful and describes RA and many other diseases in a way that I have never been able to. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.


I bend but I do not break.

I crack but I am not in pieces.

I may be bruised but I am not damaged.

I am shaken but I am not shattered.

I can be wounded but I cannot be destroyed.

I can be hurt, but I will heal.

I may cry tears but tears will not dissolve me.

I can stumble but I will rise.

I may sit down in acceptance but I will stand up in action.

I can be hurt but I will heal.

I may be… very discouraged but I will become very determined.

I am not broken.

I’ve been bent, but life has bent me.

I am bending, but I am choosing to bend.

As I am bending, I am strengthening and mending.

I am still alive and standing.

Death is final, but life is everything that has bent me but does not break me.

by Karen Burch ~ Hold My Hand ~

If Jeffrey Gottfurcht can climb Mt. Everest, I can make it to the gym once in a while

Jeffery Gottfurcht

For the first time in known history, a fellow rheumie – AKA Rheumatoid Arthritis patient  named Jeffrey Gottfurcht is going to attempt to climb Mt. Everest starting in late March 2011. This is mind-blowing to me. To think… RA (Rheumatoid Arthritis) limits me from tackling certain things everyday like typing, unlocking my apartment door, buttoning my coat, etc. while this man with the same disease is going to climb Mt. Everest. Amazing!

Jeffrey is the founder of the Jeffrey Gottfurcht Children’s Arthritis Foundation. His foundation seeks to fulfill the dreams of children afflicted by RA. He  was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis at the age of 28.

If you have had RA for a period of time, you already know this disease will change your life in many ways – both negatively and sometimes even positively. If you were recently diagnosed, believe me when I tell you that it sucks, but something good can and will come out of this seemingly terrible situation. The fact is, all chronic diseases will change your life. Just try not to dwell too much on the bad, and let the disease change you in positive ways too. People like Jeffery should be an inspiration to us all.

Learn more about Jeffrey’s climb at his foundation’s website.