As I sat in the tub I thought about the last 2 years especially. A little over 2 years ago I quit taking Remicade. I was not getting benefit from it anymore and had started the oh so obvious decline that can be Psoriatic Arthritis, but my skin was still clear, I still had energy, I still felt able to be productive at work, I still made commitments with friends, and I started a relationship with a wonderful man. He doesn't read this blog, but I still feel he deserves to be acknowledged as the one person who was there through the worst of my last two years. He stuck by me as my skin turned into scales that cracked and bled, through days when I couldn't walk or get out of bed, he believed in me and that I was beautiful even when I didn't. Then came a time when I had to leave. Even though he never left me, I had to leave him. We both had to do the best thing for our own lives and that meant not being with each other. For the rest of my life I will respect and love him for being my strength when I had none.
So now here I am. I am blessed to have my family close by, but I realized today that these people are meeting the "new" me. The me who has days when I can't leave the house. The me who doesn't work because I am sick. The me who isn't real sure who me is sometimes. The me who has learned to make the best of what I can, and lives life with quality because quantity isn't an option. They will never know the me who would dance till the sun came up, climbed cliffs, ran 10k's, created detailed jewelry, the me who excelled in a career and the me who didn't accept limits or rules because there was always more I could accomplish. I wonder if they will accept the me I have become.
I realize that with what my disease has created for me I do have some blessings. I have the time to see the beauty around me, to truly enjoy the things I can do when I can do them. I can write and create again. Maybe I can even love again. It still reminds me every day of the things I can't do though. The things I can't give my children, the things I have to watch from the sidelines. It's a hard pill to swallow some days.
I guess I need to resign myself to riding the rollercoaster. I always loved the thrill of the ride. It's just a little different view now and I will find a way to see the beauty of that point of view. It's just going to take some time.
So tonight is dedicated to the rollercoaster of life. May we all find a way to enjoy the ride. The view from the top is phenomenal!