A scientist who loves to sew, Aimee has a lot of things she wants to do. In addition to holding a full-time governmental position in environmental science and being a mom to her college-aged son, she spends her free time following her passions for photography, cooking and sewing –detailing her activities on her “Capture, Craft, and Cook” blog.
Busy with her life and passions, it was a bit of a when Aimee was diagnosed with RA in 2011. “I moved for a job and had to find a new doctor. When my medical records were transferred, my new doctor found test results that showed I was positive for rheumatoid factor even though I had never been diagnosed with RA. She referred me to a rheumatologist, and shortly after that I was diagnosed with RA.”
“When I was first diagnosed, I was really mad because I had been in so much pain for so long, and in my opinion, it could have been resolved a lot sooner. After that initial anger over not being diagnosed for so long, I was glad to know what it was. I felt like once I knew my enemy, I knew how to fight it. I could do my research and know what my next steps should be. For a long time, my husband and I had slept in two separate bedrooms. It was really different when my treatment started to work. I was no longer in pain. I could finally sleep through the night, and we were able to sleep in the same bed again.”
Aimee’s doctor began using Vectra with her after she had been on RA treatment for a while and had complications due to her medication. “I was off of my medicine for a couple of months, and when I went back to the doctor, she recommended the Vectra test to see where my disease activity was before we started a new treatment. That way, after I’d been on my new treatment for a few months, she could do the test again to get an idea if it was working or not. The Vectra test has been beneficial in showing how each medication I’ve been on has affected my RA. I have changed treatment multiple times, and each time I change treatment, we do it again to see where I’m at.”
“I haven’t had to change a whole lot because of my RA. I still work full-time. I still enjoy all of my hobbies; however, I do modify things as I need to. I come from a family of women who sew and make quilts. I noticed, as my RA progressed, that I had problems cutting out pieces for quilts. I’m really into gadgets, so when I went to a quilt show and saw a device where you put the fabric in, and it would cut it for you, I bought it! I thought it was wonderful that I could still do what I love without my hands hurting me. I feel I can still live my life as I want. I haven’t had to change a whole lot, and I don’t want to. I want to live my life as normally as possible.”
“I’m excited to tell how I’m #RedefiningRA because I want to show others that RA is not an end-all. You can still live your life. It doesn’t have to affect everything. You may have to slow down, but you can still do everything you love with RA.”
How are you living a full life with RA? Let us know how you are #RedefiningRA in the comment box below.