A Day in The Life

Standard

6:45 AM:  Alarm starts buzzing and gets a swift (albeit soft due to RA fingers) whack to the snooze button.

6:55 AM:  Alarm buzzes again.  Swift soft whack repeated.

6:59AM:  Cat slinks into room, jumps on bed, and meows to say “for real, already, I NEED FOOD.”

7:05AM:   Combination of alarm and needy cat avert whack to snooze button and I groggily rise and assess cat bowl situation. I catch myself walking gingerly because I’m not sure how my feet feel yet to see that there is plenty but she demands a top off.  Occasionally, opening the lid of the container hurts. But what can I say…she’s a little diva.

7:10AM: Shower – problems opening shampoo and conditioner bottles which has influenced brands that I buy. Initial daily assessment of my aches and pains. 10 fingers, only 2 or 3 sore  = success. 10 fingers, 8-10 hurting = bad mood. Same with toes, knees, shoulders,wrists although I only have 2 of the last three mentioned.  Having 10 of the last three would not be bad mood but rather inevitable reality show stardom.

7:15AM: Hair drying, makeup application, clothing selection, longing glances back at the bed.  Minor difficulties with sharpening eyeliner with little pencil sharpener, sometimes picking a different pair of pants or shirt depending on condition of fingers and tightness of buttons.  Occasional difficulties on bad mood days with opening and squirting out toothpaste.  On really really bad days, it hurts running my fingers through wet tangled hair.  Thankfully, that hasn’t happened in quite awhile. Knock on wood.

7:30AM:  Breakfast time.  Usually soy yogurt.  No difficulties here unless you consider the lack of variety of soy yogurt available in the Charlotte metro area a difficulty.  (I would like flavors other than strawberry and blueberry and I hate fruit on the bottom.  But that’s all I can ever find.  In 3 different grocery stores.)

7:45AM: Time to head to work.  Minor difficulties in locking both front and back door.  When it’s cold, I can’t lock the deadbolt on the back so I lock the switch on the outer back door (which is actually more secure- found this out the day I locked myself out and a locksmith couldn’t get it open) and always difficult to turn the key in the deadbolt on the front.

7:55 8:05AM:  Arrive at work.  If I’m the first person there, opening this lock is always difficult.  Luckily, I’m never the first one there. 

8:00AM – 12:00PM: Meetings with clients, sales calls, admin work, conference calls.  Occasional problems on bad mood days with the following: typing, assembling presentation handouts, sending emails on Blackberry, fatigue, walking long distances on client site tours.  Minor difficulties every day with pulling and putting files up into tightly packed file cabinets, discomfort caused in knees by sitting in same position for too long, aching shoulders from sitting at desk.

12:00PM – 1PM: LUNCH.  No difficulties here.

1PM- 5PM:  Meetings with clients, sales calls, admin work, conference calls.  Occasional problems on bad mood days with the following: typing, assembling presentation handouts, sending emails on Blackberry, fatigue, walking long distances on client site tours.  Minor difficulties every day with pulling and putting files up into tightly packed file cabinets, discomfort caused in knees by sitting in same position for too long, aching shoulders from sitting at desk.

5PM- 6PM:  End of day meetings/conference calls/ occasional networking events/ drive home.  Occasional problems on bad mood days with peeling and sticking name tags on myself at networking events and also fatigue.  Minor difficulties every day with unlocking front door.

6PM- 10PM:  Dinner with friends, Happy Hour, dinner at home, gym, and other miscellaneous events.  A lot of times, the gym gets cut.  I’m most comfortable on the elliptical- good range of motion exercise for joints if you take it easy on resistance.  Difficulties with grasping free weights- I’m learning how to use the machines. Still afraid to try classes. Minor difficulties with cooking- it’s uncomfortable to grasp a knife to cut, inability to exert force to open jars, nervous to lift heavy baking dishes in and out of oven with hot pad due to not feeling like I’m able to grasp baking pan as well with hot pad. Fatigue is an occasional problem with all above except Happy Hour.  There is no fatigue in Happy Hour.  (Said with same intonation that Tom Hanks uses in A League of Their Own when he says ‘there’s no crying in baseball.”)

10:15PM: Wash face, take meds.  Minor difficulties opening pill bottles. 

10PM:  TV time in bed with feline.  Occasional problems getting comfortable with shoulders and wrists depending on if/where cat chooses to lay on me.  Occasionally discomfort caused by this makes sleeping impossible.  End of day assessment of aches and pains. 

Wash, rinse, repeat.

I’m a little sad that I can’t remember any other way now…

But I still feel very blessed.

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8 responses »

  1. What a list! Yes, I’ve been there, done that (well, some same things and some different ones), and with the exception of Happy Hour (for me, that was when I’d take a Percocet), the same nighttime routine as well.

    Just to be practical, consider asking your pharmacist to put screw-caps on your meds. MUCH easier than dealing with caps you have to pop off or (shudder) the child/RA-proof kind. You don’t have to close them super-tight, either.

    Sounds like you could use a wee vacation, even if only to vary your routine. I hope tomorrow is a feeling-better day for you.

  2. Minor difficulties every day with pulling and putting files up into tightly packed file cabinets, discomfort caused in knees by sitting in same position for too long, aching shoulders from sitting at desk.

    i hear that!

    hope today is a good day.

  3. Wow. You should print that out and take it to your doctor. I guess because you’re responding to medication they would consider you to be ‘doing well’? And it still shows, doing well does not mean back to the old normal. I just wonder if doctors actually know about these day-in, day-out problems.

  4. I am truly amazed you do everything you do during a single day. But, I am glad you have happy hour to look forward too. It is the little things in life that keep us going, right?

  5. Great post! (And I’m with WarmSocks – good for you on the 5 minute showers! I like to linger.)

    I think our adaptability in the face of this disease is incredible. There are so many things we have difficulty doing, but we just figure out a way around them and move on.

  6. Sorry you’re suffering so much, but thank you once again for making me laugh. I love the way you write!

    I’m SO glad someone else has this thing of ‘not sure how the feet feel yet … ‘ I’m no where near as severe as you, and I often feel a fraud in the mornings ’cause i get up and think ‘Yay, no aches, not too stiff…’ and then a couple of minutes later it all kicks off. I don’t know why this is, but I’m glad i don’t feel so alone about it now!

    Polly

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