Wednesday, May 12, 2010


Noblesville, IN
Diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis at age 30.
How has your condition affected you? My condition has affected me in several ways.  The worst part of all of this for me was waiting for a diagnosis.  I feared that I had a deadly disease that would rob me of my opportunity to live a long and full life with the man that I love and our beautiful children. I have resolved to never take my time with them for granted.  I have also become more aware of toxins in our homes.  I have tried to shift towards buying organic food and green cleaning products, though the strain on our budget is difficult.  I am truly less energetic than I used to be, which is far more frustrating than the constant pain in my hands and feet.  I feel that despite great ambitions for my life,  I am somewhat limited by the constant and overwhelming fatigue.  This makes me sad or angry more often than I would like to admit.

What would you like for other people to know about Rheumatoid Arthritis? People should know that having Rheumatoid Arthritis is more than pain in your joints.  It is experiencing all of the feelings that I described and more. It is nearly invisible to an outsider, but the pain and fatigue are real and intense.

What would you like to tell someone who was recently diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis?  If someone was recently diagnosed with an autoimmune disease, I would tell them to always look for the silver lining in any bad situation.  Although it is hard to believe, having RA has had a positive effect on my life in some ways.  My husband and I have grown closer after my diagnosis.  I feel overwhelming love and gratitude when he steps up to the plate, when I am too tired to handle something.  I cherish every moment with him and our children.  I have become a better mother by being very aware of my children's nutrition, with the hope of preventing them from developing an autoimmune disease.  I have been a better friend by providing support to my other friends with similar conditions.  When I am sad, I try to focus on these things and spoil myself with my favorite coffee, of course!

Thank you so much Katy!


Cybergabi said...

Again a beautiful photo and story. Love the colors. You always seem to find a perfect match between the person and the way you photograph them. It reflects the connection you establish with the people.

Rock on!

Jodi said...

thanks gabi!

Aunt Teena said...

I find these people very brave. They don't get much sympathy because they look fine. But they all seem to look for the good in life, rather than focus on their conditions.

superbitch said...

I would LOVE to have you feature could be my great identity reveal. ;)

Jodi said...

@superbitch: you just let me know when you are ready! =)

Renee said...

This story along with all the others are very inspirational. I also have rheumatoid arthritis and was diagnosed at the early age of 18. I try to keep a positive attitude just as the individuals featured on this website. I look normal, but inside I am experiencing severe pain. I am no longer on humira, plaquenil, methotrexate, daypro, etc. because they are not helping. I am 29 years old, and have been told that both my hips may need replacing, but it will be alright. I love to smile, and I believe that what has not killed me has made me stronger. I am so grateful that I found out about this website in a magazine at my doctor's office. I feel as though I am no longer alone when I read these stories.
Thank you so much Jodi and to all who share in fighting autoimmune diseases!

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