Rheumatoid Arthritis

Release the burden!

Back in October, I had the pleasure of being with fellow RA patients in Philadelphia for our Joint Decisions Summit. On the last day, we had the chance to participate in the What I Be Project (you can read about my experience here).

After some discussion with the founder, Steve Rosenfield, I decided that I needed to be free of feeling like a burden. A financial, emotional, physical burden.

For the few months following the summit, I had a better perspective. Sure I would say that I was sorry to my husband too many times and yes, unnecessary tears were shed but I really tried value myself. Until this morning.

If you follow me on Instagram or twitter, you may know that I am almost always in some state of nausea. My pain patch makes me nauseous and when I take my morning or evening meds, my nausea spikes significantly (post methotrexate injection nausea is in a category of its own). I drink ginger ale every morning on my commute- I have my nausea attack down to a science. I have Zofran but I try to save it for when I’m traveling or really need to function after methotrexate.

This morning as I was getting ready to shower, my nausea hit. Really early and really intense. I debated on texting my husband who was downstairs, to bring me a ginger ale. I didn’t want to. I didn’t want to be a burden. I knew he was relaxing on the couch after working a crazy shift at the airport.

The nausea kept getting more and more intense. By the time I gave into texting my husband, it was too late (I think you can figure out what happened). He showed up at the bathroom door, cold ginger ale in hand, not bothered in the least about my needing his help.

As part of the Joint Decisions Summit, each patient created a “Declaration of Independence” (we were in Philly) to free themselves from what was controlling them- for me; it was my burden. I signed the declaration, freeing myself of feeling like a burden.

This morning, I pulled out my declaration and took a photo of it. That photo is going to remain on my phone as a reminder that my family and friends love me, I am not a burden to them.

What are you holding on to? Do you think you spend so much on medications and copays that you don’t deserve to buy yourself a new book or a dress? Do you think you rest so much that you shouldn’t take that nap that your body is begging you to take? I encourage you to acknowledge these negative thoughts and then, declare them not worthy of your time. Write it, photograph it, tweet it out to the masses. We are worthy.


  1. Karen

    When I have out of range blood sugars, I feel like I’m a failure. I think I need to release myself of the self-judgment and guilt. It is my body that has failed, and out of range blood sugars come with that. I need to release the burden of trying to make up for a functioning organ – and trying to do so perfectly all the time.

    Thanks for this!!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.