Wednesday, December 14, 2011


Today's shining glory: only breaking out into massive, sobbing hysterics once (yet - the evening is still young) while trying to get to the bathroom.  I'm proud of myself!!  I think it only took me 20-25 minutes, too, which is amazing!  Okay, okay, Dom basically carried me most of the way up there, but I made it down myself!!

I know I've been MIA lately, and that sucks.  This is an RA blog after all, and I've got some RA crap on the go.  Despite the fact that most of my time is spent on my couch watching television ALL day long, I do have pretty big things going on in my life, most of which are not fun.

More of a long-winded post, full of depressing crap* soon, I promise!!

* Okay, so my life is not total crap :)  I feel with all this stuff, my relationship is getting stronger, I can appreciate those tiny little victories so much, and Christmas is a season I love very much.  While, I'm not getting as much accomplished as I'd like (fun shopping, baking, hanging out, etc.), it's still a beautiful time of the year up here in Labrador!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Week 2

Some thoughts after my first full week of sick leave:

1. Bra-less-ness.  Ahhhhhhhhhhhh :)

2. Netflix, how I love thee.  Thank you for indulging me in all the movies that Dom hates.  Time to catch up on my horrors/thrillers!

3.  I just realized, despite not working, I do have my own uniform.  It goes like this:  sweatpants, t-shirt, slippers, bra optional.

4.  Man, I love my couch!

5.  Wow, I can kill time like nobody's business.  I can't believe I thought I'd be bored!!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

When Life Hands You a Float, You Ride It

So, I work at a feminist organization, and one of the events we hold each year is Take Back the Night.  It's an opportunity for women to march down the street, chanting, singing, holding signs and protesting violence against women.  Supportive men wait for us at a local park, bbq-ing and preparing for our arrival.  Then it's fun family time with singing, poetry and other open-mic type entertainment.

This is one of my favourite events we hold.  It's utterly empowering, thrilling and totally fun.  Over 100 women and children, a float and a lot of noise.

                                                      Getting ready for last year's march

However, this is going to be the first year that I may not be able to walk.  I've been in a major flare impacting my right hip and right knee (with some major neck muscle pain to boot) for about two weeks.  I can barely make it around my house most days, never mind a 30 minute walk.

As I mentioned above, we do have a float, and I will be taking full advantage.  So, this year, instead of walking at the front and chanting until my throat is raw, I will be riding in the back and chanting until my throat is raw.  I'm still participating, but I'm a little sad that it's not how I want to be participating.

This is all a lead in to the fact that the march, this Friday night, will be my last day of work for a month.  I'm taking off a month paid sick leave to try and get my health back on track, then re-entering work on a part-time basis for a period of time.  My workplace is beyond supportive, for which I am unbearably grateful.  I know not everyone has this option.

RA got the best of me, y'all.  But I'm not going down without a massive fight, and I plan on rising from this crap by taking care of myself and RESTING.  What a novel idea :)

Friday, July 29, 2011

Belly Braggin'

Guess what I've been eating, huh?  Strawberries from my garden.  That's right, I have my own patch of tasty little morsels in my very own yard.  And, yes, I know people have been eating strawberries for a little while now this summer.  BUT, I live in Labrador people, and it's pretty amazing to eat something out of my yard when it's not even August yet (which is in a couple of days, but whatever).  It's not exactly the tropics around here.

I think I could be at least documenting some of my garden on camera so I could physically show off to people...I'll get on that.  In the meantime, here is a picture of a patch of strawberries not in my garden (and my patch doesn't have that many red yet.  It's still Labrador.  While it's 28 degrees Celsius this week, it was 7 degrees Celsius last week.  I've only eaten maybe 6 strawbs thus far):

                                                            You are the sunshine of my life

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Tastes of Home

How can eating fish make me so happy??  I don't think I need anything else in my life at this very moment other than this freshly caught salmon with spinach, red pepper and avocado salad.  Salmon caught by my uncle.  I guess it would be better if Dom were here, but I know he is probably right now eating his exact replica of a lunch, so we're good.

This should be us, in a few weeks:

                                    Dom and I summer 2009, cleaning the salmon we caught.
                                               I wish I could still squat down like that! 

Living the good life, I tell ya!  Summer in Labrador ain't nothin' to be sneered at.  I'll soon be in my small, ocean-side hometown, fishing, attending a salmon festival (a whole festival dedicated to my one true love - after Domino), whale-gazing, eating great food, and loving my family.  Can't wait!

* edited to add:  I don't know what in the crap is up with Blogger, but I currently can't comment on any blogs - mine or otherwise.  I wanted to comment in the post down below and thank everyone for their support in this wacky/anxious/exciting journey I am on.  So, thank you! 
Much love and peace, Pony.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Good Things...

1.  Summer, though the temperatures are a little on the low side.  On the upswing, though!

2.  Sunflower seed butter.  Melty on my oatmeal.  Who knew??

3.  The tulips in the strawberry patch.

4.  The strawberry patch, for that matter.

5.  A three day work week coming up.  Monday and Friday off.  Sa-weet!!

5.  Having clear fallopian tubes.  Truly under-rated, and pretty key in this baby-makin' business :)

Friday, June 3, 2011

Send Some Love?

Well, in a couple of hours time, I'll be off to the doctor's to stick my feet in stirrups have an HSG test done, which is basically a fertility test to see if my tubes are open.  I'm excited and scared and looking forward to answers (whether negative or positive!).  When I started this blog, it was to find support, from anyone with RA, but mostly to talk about being a woman with RA and trying for a baby.  I never thought it would come to me talking about infertility like this, but here we are.  And, support I get in droves!  Despite this post, I feel optimistic, as whatever news I get today, there are paths to take (either easy or expensive and time-consuming-whatever, they're still options).

Just lookin' for some good vibes!!  Thanks :)

Monday, May 9, 2011

Back To Life, Back to Hyper Dog Activity

Back from vacation, back from a work trip, back to reality where my four-pound weight loss was shot out the window because of vacation, and back to dog-sitting (by myself).  Yeeeaaaahhhh.

Why do I feel like I need a vacation just after I had a vacation???

Oh, and that picture down there, the one in the post below where I am all warm and sunny in Montreal?  Never happened.  No, no, no, it had to be the coldest temperatures in 70 years while we were there.  And rain.  Which has resulted in an awful flood in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, my sweetie's hometown.  Not to worry, all the family are safe and sound, as are their houses.  Not so for about 3000 other homes and buildings in the town.  Please give a shout-out, prayer, thought or anything else to the folks of Richelieu, who are going through some pretty crap time right now.  Which makes my crap time pretty insignificant.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Slow and Steady Drops the Pounds

Just popping in to brag that I am down about four pounds!!  This has happened in the past month, so about a pound a week, which is pretty reasonable.  Especially considering the flares I've been having (in my hip!!!  NOOOO!!!!!), coupled with the icy conditions (aka, little walking for me) spring often brings.  My focus has been on my serving sizes, and I've even been eating treats (of the ice cream and cream egg varieties).

I'm assuming all my hard work will be undone as this Friday, Dom and I are off on a road trip to the Montreal area for 10 days!!  Aside from family time, all our plans revolve around food:  Dom's favourite pizza place; crazy poutine (involving coleslaw - don't knock it til you've tried it!  I knocked it, then tried it and am now contrite); SUGAR SHACK (that deserves bold letters cause they revolve around maple syrup, my crack, if you will); various other lovely restaurants; grocery shopping for non existent in Labrador foods; and I'm assuming crepes made by the ma-in-law :)

The last time I was in Montreal in April (2008), it looked like this:

Sunshine, warm temps, lovely outdoor cafe with amazing brie-honey sandwiches, awesome shirt borrowed from friend, awesome baby borrowed from friend....perfect spring day!

Friday, March 18, 2011

The Big, Dreaded Word

Well, I have to admit I fell off the wagon last night.  I totally ate junk food for my dinner as a result of my emotional eating.  However, I've decided I don't really care about it as my afternoon delivered the big, dreaded word: infertility.  Now, I am not saying I am infertile, but I am saying I might be.  I'm saying my OB/GYN spoke with Dom and I about possibly taking fertility meds.  I am saying I delivered a request from my doctor to radiology for a test for infertility (a pretty invasive one, I might add!) that stated, "INFERTILITY" on it.  I'm saying I nearly lost my shit in radiology.  It just makes it so much more real having it written by someone else on paper.

This appointment was followed by a couple of tears and a greasy supper that I somehow feel soothes my sorrow, which was then followed by a visit with a happy-go-lucky pregnant friend (which is wonderful, but slightly brutal on that particular day).

I've decided that I am allowed to have "infertility days".  I'm guessing these will be my appointment/procedure days.  Days that if I am craving crap, I'm going to go with it.  Days when I don't need to visit with friends, especially friends that are pregnant.  I dearly love my friends, and I love talking about their pregnancies (I did want to be a midwife), but sometimes I don't need the reminder that this hasn't been, and maybe won't be, an easy road for me.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Not About Bikinis...

Sigh.  As a staunch feminist I don't advocate for "perfect" bodies.  I love all shapes and sizes, and believe that health and happiness can be at any weight.  However, in the past year and a half (or so) I've gained about 20 pounds.  I think I have been eating a bit more crap than what I used to, but the real culprit is my drop in physical activity.  I used to walk everywhere, snowshoe, elliptical, hike, generally build up a sweat on a daily basis.  But, with this dumb ankle, and dumb hip, I just can't maintain that level anymore.

I wasn't underweight to begin with, so I'm not too into the idea of carrying around a bunch of extra weight on my already stressed out ankle.  I don't think I'm at a weight (around 155 at 5'3 and a half) that is really impacting my health, other than my joints.  I've also been thinking that when (not if!) I get pregnant, that's a bunch more impact added to my poor joints.  So, folks, I'm on a very healthy mission to lose about 15-20 pounds.  I'm trying to incorporate more activity into my life (much more regular walking and hopefully I'll get back to my Pilate's), but the real change has to be my food intake.  Dom and I are generally super healthy eaters, I guess I just eat too much.  So, lately I've been cutting down sizes and really trying to pay attention to my body and what it needs.  It hasn't been horrific thus far and I have eaten some amazing food.

I just hate being a woman talking about losing weight!  Somehow I feel like I am going against so much of what I believe in.  Except, I believe in being healthy and I don't feel healthy at this weight (my ankle sure doesn't!).  So, hell no, I'm not on a diet!  I guess I'm just trying to be more intuitive.  Anyone have any good vibes to send my way?  I can still be a feminist if I want to lose weight for my health, right?

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Here's to a great year, full of family, friends, love, baby-makin' fun, simple cups of tea, flares, accomplishments, ups, downs and all the in-betweens.  Here's to being wiser, gaining strength and letting go of some crap.  Here's to wishes and dreams, and not letting go of them.  Here's to boat-loads of birthday cake from some amazing people.

I'm determined that my 32nd year, which starts today, will be the best one I've yet to see :)  Much love and peace, friends!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Morning Conversation

Scene: Me sitting, N coming over to say hi.

Me:  "Morning!"

N:  "Good morning, are you putting on weight?"

Me: "YES."

N:  "Are you pregnant?"

Me:  "NO."

N:  "Oh, I thought you were going to tell me you were pregnant.  Cause you're putting on weight."

Me:  "Nope, not pregnant."

N:  "OH!  Guess what??   So-and-so is in labour!  It's so exciting!!!"

Wham, bam, schlam.  Three for one.  YES, I have gained weight.  NO, despite trying for 15 cycles I am still not pregnant.  OH, everyone else is pregnant and having their babies??   THAT'S GREAT.

Note:  I have only slightly altered this conversation.  There was a side conversation about going to the bank after I said good morning, and the story about the labouring woman was wayyyy longer than I depicted.  Other than that, it is nearly word for word.  Such is my life.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Just A Quickie

I'm just popping in to brag:  IT'S SNOWING!!!!!   I know for many this isn't something to be so excited about, but I truly am!  I know I'm not the one who has to shovel it, but still.  It's so beautiful and calming, and besides, it helps to insulate houses from the -20C temps we've been having in these parts.


Sunday, January 16, 2011

For Squirrel!

In my last post I mentioned snowshoeing, my beloved winter activity.  Squirrel, over at Feelin' Swell: My Life With RA, questioned me as to what the heck this actually is.  Well, far be it from me to get over-excited and blab on and on about snowshoeing!

For starters, here are a few pics of me snowshoeing over Christmas break:
In the top photo you can see the Franster joining me in a pose while modeling her Christmas bandanna (yes I am a nerd who puts a bandanna on her dog!).  And, the bottom is an action shot.  We don't have much snow, but I was desperate to get out! :)

Basically snowshoeing is the use of snowshoes to be able to walk on snow, distributing weight evenly to avoid sinking into it too deeply.  This is pretty key for places that get many feet/metres of snow.   Snowshoes are traditionally a wooden, ovalish frame with woven rawhide (or rope, or any other long rope-like thing).  Modern snowshoes are metal, no real weaving, and are generally smaller.  I can't really see them working in very deep snow, due to their size.  These are not for me.  I like the wooden/woven ones.

(Here is where I would insert a close-up pic of a more traditional snowshoe, but blogger is being a jerk.  Instead here is a wikipedia link to have a look at one type of snowshoe).

Snowshoeing is my favourite form of exercise, it is my favourite way to burn calories, to socialize, to de-stress, to walk the dog, to re-energize and to enjoy the outdoors.  When I couldn't snowshoe last year, due to my dumb ankle, I cried.  When I tried again this year, and was able to do it, I cried again.  I am in no way an exercise lover (I am in fact, quite lazy), but there is something about it that enthralls me.  It works my muscles like crazy, while simultaneously linking me to nature (I live in Labrador for a reason).

As, I type this I look out the window to see snow softly falling, a promise of snowshoe days to come.  This truly is my bliss.  Thanks for the opportunity to share this, Squirrel!

Friday, January 14, 2011


Trying to find the energy, or something, to write a proper blog post....and not quite getting there.  I've even been doing terrible at reading other's posts!  I feel neglectful of this sad blog, and the community that I get so much support from.  And, it's not that I don't have anything to write about: intense flare in my right knee, rendering it's resemblance to a watermelon to be a shade too scary; a wonderful, relaxing Christmas; being able to snowshoe again (thank goodness!!!); and my continuing rant about the state of the environment (i.e. the crappy/warm/rainy/snowless weather we've been having.  Which also leads to a rant about being physically able to snowshoe again, but lacking the actual snow to do it).  Other than that, it's all boring around here :)