I can't believe it has been so long since my last post! Jeesh! I'm still learning and coping with my autoimmune disease, Sjogrens. I also found out in December that I had tested positive for Rheumatoid Arthritis. FUN! It explained a few crazy flares that I had in September and October with my hip. Crazy pain that developed pretty suddenly and got so bad I could barely walk, or stand. It was awful! My rheumatologist had taken a ton of blood work on my first visit in August. I mean a TON! I've had several vials done at a time before, it's not new to me, beleive me. I usually have some big tubes and some smaller tubes. When the nurse came in she had a fistful of tubes, then went and grabbed a couple of jumbo tubes. Apparently what I considered the big ones were actually medium I guess b/c I had no idea they got any bigger! My vein almost stopped giving blood; I had to squeeze my hand a few times to keep it going. Afterwards when I went home I had to take a nap. I was so dang tired,there was no way I would have stayed awake. Thank goodness my husband went with me and drove. A lot of the tests were the same ones my primary had ran, he just wanted to recheck certain numbers and the rheumatoid factor. BUT I wasn't told it came back positive! So imagine my surprise and shock when I was told 4 months later at my second visit that I also had RA.
I've also lost my sense of smell and taste in between the two visits. Well, not lost completely, more like diminished. That started in September/October and continues to this day. I just noticed one day I hadn't been smelling things like before-the cookies burning in the oven, the coffee brewing in the pot, my husband's cologne. It was gone. Food started tasting bland as well. The weird thing was my nose wasn't stuffy. I was actually clearer than I had been in a long time! I always had a stuffy nose, and now the stuffiness is pretty much gone. I can breathe easier out of my nose than ever before, so why no smells? I asked the rheumy if it was the Sjogrens, and he said maybe. It could happen but to have my primary check it out before blaming it solely on the autoimmunity. So I see my primary at the beginning of February and he checks my nose out, asks if I have any sinus pressure, pain, toothache, head trauma etc. The answer is no. (I really really wanted to make a joke about macheting my brother in half when I was young, but I didn't. That's a movie reference btw-Walk Hard-The Dewey Cox Story I believe is the name of it.) So he looks up the symptom and finds that actually 33% of Sjogren's patients lose their sense of smell. That's a pretty good chunk! So he scheduled me for a CT scan just to be careful but neither of us think it's going to show anything. Well, shocker it did come back showing I had "significant sinus disease". WTF? It's basically sinusitis, according to all the googling I've done. But I have no pain, remember? No mucous, no drainage, no grossness that usually accompanies sinus infections! So he put me on a heavy duty round of antibiotics and when that's over I need to check in with him to see how I'm doing. It's almost time-and not much has changed. So I will prolly need to see an ENT specialist. YAY another copay! I swear! But I'm just gonna keep trying to keep my head up! Trying not be depressed, it's hard. I did go through some mild depression when I first realized food wasn't tasting good anymore. I like food! And another when I was told I have RA. The only thing I could think about for awhile was my hands twisting and turning into claws that you can't do anything with. I keep thinking about what my retirement is going to look like, will I be able to type or hold a paintbrush? Sometimes it's not a blessing to know the name of what ails you. I used to be able to push the pains off to the back of my mind easily by telling myself I must have hurt a muscle by moving wrong, or I layed on my limb wrong in my sleep, give it a few days it will go away. It always does. Now all I can think is this will never go away completely, it will be always be in the background lurking and it will only get worse with time. Some dreary stuff!! So that's how the last of 2015 and the beginning of my 2016 looked like. Sorry if I'm being too depressing man, I'm trying out here! But I just had to get it all out, it's been building inside of me! My next post won't be like this I promise! I have lots of pictures of some things I made that I've been wanting to post since 2014, lol.