RA Blog Week day 4: Hobbies

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Hobbies – Hobbies are healthy or maybe they are not? What is your hobby and how does it help you with your autoimmune conditions? If you do not have a hobby imagine a great hobby for a person dealing with RA.

Honestly, I used to have more hobbies prior to getting diagnosed.  I used to travel, worked out, spent tons of time at the beach, dinners in the city, and shopping.  My favorite hobby was shopping.  I loved going to malls.  Loved the challenge of finding the best deals.  Loved it all.  Sadly, I haven’t been to a mall in over 3 or maybe 4 years.  Walking in malls is just too difficult when you combine it with carrying bags, trying on clothing, etc.   Plus, the cost of all my medical expenses (and Georgia’s) puts a huge crimp on my ability to spend money.  Now all my funds go to prescriptions, ace bandages, joint braces, pain relieving gels, gadgets, and clothing without buttons and zippers…..and let’s not forget all the complementary therapies like physical therapy, acupuncture, and massage therapy.  It’s really expensive to be sick.

I’m fairly sedentary now and that makes me sad.  Swelling and pain make it too difficult to do anything that requires energy or physical stamina.  My hobbies now include anything I can do from my couch: reading (my kindle is my BFF), blogging, and online shopping.  Every once in a while I do leave the couch to do advocacy work in person, but I’m finding it harder to do that while I am still working full time.

I don’t know what the perfect hobby would be for someone with RA.  Whatever it is, it needs to make you happy.  Live in chronic pain is not fun.  Do things that give you as much bliss as possible.

I’m proud to be a part of the 3rd annual RA Blog week!  Check out today’s other blogs about hobbies here:  http://radiabetes.com/blog_week17/day4.html

 

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Kelly holds masters degrees in both Special Education and Speech-Language Pathology. She works full-time as a speech-language pathologist in both a public school setting and as an adjunct faculty member at a university, in Philadelphia, PA. She specializes in both autism and augmentative/alternative communication and took her skills to Uganda, Africa to start a special needs program for disabled children living in an orphanage in 2011. Kelly began experiencing symptoms of autoimmune arthritis in 1984 (while in her teens) but wasn’t officially diagnosed with autoimmune arthritis until 2001. Her first diagnosis was Sjogren’s syndrome. Eventually her diagnosis was changed to sero-negative RA and now Polyarticular Spondlyoarthropathy. She also manages thyroid disease (resulting from Graves Disease), fibromyalgia, renin-deficient hypertension, and disseminated superficial actinic porokeratosis (DSAP) on a daily basis. Kelly connected with other autoimmune arthritis patients via social media in 2008. She began volunteering with the “Buckle Me UP! Movement”, which evolved into the International Autoimmune Arthritis Movement (IAAM) beginning in 2009. Then became a cofounder of IFAA in 2013. She has represented the ACR on Capitol Hill as an Advocate for Arthritis, was a finalist in Wego Health’s Health Activist Hero awards in 2014, and speaks at various healthcare conferences as a patient advocate in the Philadelphia area.

4 thoughts on “RA Blog Week day 4: Hobbies

  1. I would love to chat over a cup of tea with you! I agree RA can get to be a bit expensive. I love the idea of doing those things that give you as much bliss as possible. What a sweet sentiment. Thanks! XXOO

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I do have good days when I can watercolor, because it is loose movements that don’t call for a lot of pressure on paper. The brushes are easy to clean up, and it isn’t too expensive.

    When I’m having a really great day, I make scrap books or journals. I rely on premade children’s board books that I can just glue things to. Garage sales are a great place to pick up cheap supplies, but of course that is if the ankles, knees, and hips cooperate to do a bit of shopping.

    Reading is my go to for days when I can’t use my hands, or when I don’t want to move period.

    I really can’t complain. I’m taking methotrexate, and until lately I had good management of pain and stiffness. Things seem like they are changing, and I dread the need for a higher dosage, or a move to biologics. Oh, and the dreadful steroids!

    I’m so happy to have found your blog! I applaud you for fighting so hard to keep your career! You inspire me to keep going.

    Liked by 1 person

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