Thursday, December 29, 2005


Weather is a Pain

Where I live the winters are fairly mild. It never snows. We get alot of rain and fog though. The temperatures usually are in the high 40s/low 50s during the day and can drop to the low 30s at night. Yet, my arthritis still affected by these less dramatic weather changes.

As the weather gets rainier, I get creakier. I usually start to notice the change sometime at the beginning of December. I have more trouble walking as my feet seem to be constantly sore. Joints that don't normally bother me begin acting up. I never have trouble with my hips, but on cold nights, they make it uncomfortable to sleep. My hands start to swell off and on as well.

This pattern will continue for many weeks. I have to use hot pepper lotion on my feet more and I am a little less mobile. I used to make the mistake of cutting down on exercise as as the soreness increased. I've found that I will be sore anyway. Unless it's an unusually painful day or a joint is really sensitive I exercise as much as I can.

While this pattern is painful, the worse is yet to come. Around February, our weather will swing violently between Winter and Spring. We can have days of 70-75 degrees followed by a week of fog. This is when I am at my worse. It's as if my body does not know what season to be. I get flu like symptoms, swelling, etc., mixed with really good days. It's hard to adapt because I never know which body I will have.

Finally, Spring settles in. I feel a collective sigh from my joints. One day I will notice that I can pick up my pen without tossing it across the room. When I take my 15 minute walk, my ankles no longer feel like they are held by cement. Throughout out Spring and Summer I do really well. The warmer the day, the better I feel.

And, then it's Autumn. Slowly but surely the pattern begins again. At least I know that in between the rough seasons, there are some really enjoyable weeks.

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