My joint pain has followed a pretty predictable course lately. I wake up around 6:30 in the morning feeling stiff and achy. By 10:00 my joints warm up and I am no longer hobbling around like an old lady. Around 1:00, sometimes 2:00 in the afternoon, I crash energy-wise and start sliding downhill. By the time I get home from work at 5:00, I have some energy left, but not enough to get things done around the house. My pain level also increases and leaves me stuck on the couch with a book.
But yesterday came the realization of just how debilitating RA could be and how fast it has overcome my body. I came home from work, grabbed the new National Geographic that came in the mail, and crawled under the covers to read. (Okay, I left out the part about the thin mint cookies I bought from the adorable, but evil girl scouts that ambushed me at the grocery store.) Rommel called around 6:30 and suggested walking to some nearby stores to find a present for a friend's birthday and grab dinner. I was tired but totally up for it, besides we only had to walk about four blocks. We slowly made our way there and after wandering around the first store for about twenty minutes, we found the birthday present and an adorable panda pajama set for a friend's expected arrival. My back was incredibly sore and my feet were throbbing, but I didn't say anything and we went to a second store to see if we could find some work clothes for Rommel. After another twenty minutes on my feet, I started to feel really sick. We managed to check out even though I could not continually stand in one place because it hurt my feet too much. I kind of looked like I had to pee, switching feet constantly. We bought dinner for each of us and slowly walked the few blocks home.
I crashed on the couch as soon as we made it in the door. Every joint and muscle in my body was in pain. I normally try to stay away from pain killers like ibuprofen, choosing to deal with the pain instead, but I was practically begging Rommel to bring me the bottle. After a short rest, I managed to get off the couch and very, very slowly change into my PJ's. The hardest part was getting my socks off. For some reason I could not bend over to get to my feet or raise my leg high enough to reach them. The whole time I was thinking "I just turned 30 dammit, not 100!!!". I threw in a lot more curse words though.