There was a time I believed life was over for me…

Yesterday was Rheumatic Disease Awareness Day, #rheumday, sponsored by The Rheumatic Patient Association.

over for me


Even though I’m very public with my health status, because my diseases are invisible, many people are not aware of my struggles.  Rheumatoid arthritis is something I’ve been living with since I was a teen even though my ‘official’ diagnosis was relatively recent.  After the birth of my second son, my health really crashed and I started seeing a lot of doctors.  All I really knew for certain was I used to shoe horses, move tons of hay, exercise regularly, and I’d hit a brick wall.  Anything more than a mellow walk sent me into disabling migraines.  I’d been a member of my local Y for several years but I was reduced to a gentle walk on the treadmill.  When I got my lupus diagnosis, I thought that was it.  I was never going to get off that treadmill, and life as I knew it, was over for me.

Fast forward 5 years later and my health is in a much better place through medication, lifestyle changes, and effort.  I now work at the Y that supported me through that dark time.  I’m really proud to work at the Y that helped me get my health back.  Teaching deep water aerobics yesterday, I played this song called Chico Gospel by MaMuse.  It’s a personal song for me since I first heard it when I was getting back on my feet.

There was a time I believed
Life was over for me
There was time I believed
My life was over
I feel strong today
Thanks to your help
I’ll find my way and
I too will lend you a hand
When you need one…

I am proud to work at the Y.  Because of them I am walking on this earth stronger than ever!

Find a Y near you.  They’ve got a dedicated team, many of whom have their own stories of recovery.  

If you live in Pinellas County and want to join me or another staff member at the Jim & Heather Gills Y, check their website, HERE.

Live is not over for you either!


Support an Indie band by buying music off their website from CD baby.  Listen to this song, Chico Gospel, off the album All the Way on MaMuse’s website.


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4 Responses to There was a time I believed life was over for me…

  1. I love Christa’s aqua yoga. It is the best class I have taken at any Y. I have joint issues so I restrict my exercises mostly to water. I can now go medication free and no longer go down stairs backwards. If you are fortunate enough to be able to take one of Christa’s classes at the Y do so. It will be the greatest gift you will ever give yourself. Thank you Christa.👍🏼❤️🙏

  2. I never knew all of this about you! My mother had RA and was diagnosed when I was two years old … she was pretty much bedridden from that point forward at the age of 26. She died at the age of 70 from complications from the RA. She lived in pain for over 40 years and medical science was no where near what it is today; I admire your strength and thank you for sharing your story. I would never have known that you suffered with RA – you are amazing and love having you as a co-worker!

    • Michelle – I’m sorry your mom had so much trouble with it. Thanks so much for your kind words. I do what I can, and am glad I’m able to help people in their struggles with it.

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