Writing this is a lot harder than I thought it was going to be but I think that it is something that I need to do. Whenever I heard the word 'Arthritis' I associated it with the golden oldie generation. I thought that it was what happened when some people got old and their bones started to turn to shit.
So, to be told when you are 19 that you have arthritis and realise that you have had it for a few years undiagnosed it comes as a shock.
I have been self conscious about my hands ever since I can remember, my fingers have always been a bit sausage-esque and swollen and I hated my rashes I would get but I was always told was just eczema. I would constantly go to the doctors to ask for help and I was met with various creams ranging from moisturisers to that of steroid. When it came to my swollen fingers I was told to lose weight and drink more water and then it would go away but it was only when I found I had constant chronic pain in my hands and feet that I was taken seriously.
I'm still not sure exactly why I have decided to write this blog and what its purpose will be, that is something which I assume will become clear as I write. I guess no matter how angry and upset I am about being ill, I am so happy that I pushed to find out what was wrong instead of sitting around and ignoring the problem and potentially leaving my hands to become so mangled that I would struggle to use them. I guess making young people more aware of arthritis and that it can affect anyone is the aim. To be honest I think it will make the whole process easier for me if I have this outlet and can talk to those who are going through the same thing.
The whole process can be terrifying in the space of less than a month I went from being a normal 19 year old to being poked and prodded having shit loads of information unloaded onto me, with a very short amount of time to process it. A month bombarded with MRI scans, feet hands and chest x-rays, blood tests every two weeks and various immunisations to stop me from getting ill.
If anyone is reading this and finds themselves in the same position as me and wants someone to talk to feel free to contact me or look at the list of various websites and groups that I put links up to that I have found useful.
I am still getting used to using this and working out what I am going to do but I will try and post as much as I can, as often as I can about what is going on and the various trials and tribulations of living inside a body which is attacking itself.