New revelations or I have WHAT?


I’m learning lots of new things about myself in this new stage. My boss asked me for my professional goals this week, and it really stressed me because I suddenly realized that I had attained every one of the professional goals I had set for myself last year. So I scratched my head and came up with some ideas that seemed challenging (but not impossible). I guess we’ll see how it goes.

I’ve also been battling with my new insurance company about the medications I take. My new doc (who is a love!) asked me for a narrative of my rheumatoid arthritis to explain some aspects of my journey that my former doctor had not addressed in his note to the same insurance company. Being the overachiever that I am, I had carefully obtained summary medical records for my whole family before we left California, so I pulled out the flash drive that contained mine to refresh my memory of when I was first diagnosed. As I looked at the record, I did not see “rheumatoid arthritis.” Instead, I saw “palindromic rheumatism.”


Reading those words confused me, because my self-definition has included “RA” for nearly four years now. I googled “palindromic rheumatism,” and found that I have a very rare version of RA.

Dandy. If I’m going to contract an incurable disease, it may as well be something rare. I never do anything halfway.

As I read it, I was immensely relieved to find that I will probably not suffer the joint deformities associated with RA. However, I will (and do) experience debilitating pain that hits like a ton of bricks with no warning or any discernible trigger, and then go into spontaneous remission. The nice part was that the description of the condition fit me precisely.  The bad part: the doctors in this fairly rural part of the country may not have seen this condition often, if at all.

I knew I was unique. Didn’t know I was that unique!

The other surprise has been the weather. Last time I checked, we are still in summer here in the northern hemisphere, right? It was 45 degrees this morning and will be dipping into the 30s very soon. I’ve been asking around to determine what clothing we will need for winter and finally got the answers today. Thermal underwear — which thankfully is not those ugly long johns that I had as a child — is not cheap, but is necessary. Mittens, hats (the crazier, the better), boots, and jackets are a must. I’ve been told we have about a month and a half or so before we’ll need to acquire most of the gear we need. The bummer is that my lovely colorful boots are only wearable in the spring and fall here because of the rain and mud.  Oh well…more shopping!

At least we are all happy in our new life. Every time I start to get anxious about some aspect of the transition, I keep hearing the voice that I associate with God telling me to be patient and that all will work out better than I imagine.

I now no longer doubt that voice.


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