Appreciation

I recently learned that my blog has been named as one of  “40 Excellent Blogs for Arthritis Support” by NursingDegree.net. This has really made me think. It’s also given me the kick in the pants I think I needed to start writing again.

The list is divided into blogs of two types. The first are called “Informational Resources.” Many of my favorites are included in this list, and I really value what these people do. Sometimes I feel guilty that my blog isn’t more like these – I feel that I should be doing more to help others with RA.

But then I look at the second part of the list, called “Living With Arthritis.” This is the category to which my blog belongs. And there, again, are so many blogs I love to read. And I remember how many times someone has written to me to tell me that my blog puts into words (or sometimes music) the very things they think and feel. Some have shown my blog to their partners, family, or friends, and said, “This is what I’ve been trying to say – this is what it’s like for me.” And that, I realize, is of value.

I have been hiding out because things have been hard lately, and I’ve been pretty depressed. I guess I haven’t wanted to put that out there; so many people in our community work hard to stay positive, and I admire them. I also tend to go silent when things are wrong, even with my real-life friends. (This is something that started with the RA – oddly, I used to share everything before.) But, unfortunately, sometimes depression is part of the deal with chronic illness, and if I want to be honest about my experiences, I have to include it. There are some things I still don’t want to write about because they are too personal, but there are plenty of other things I could share. Some are good, some are bad, but they are all part of the deal with RA.

So I will try to do better. I’m so grateful to those of you who continue to read my words and come back even when I’ve been silent for awhile. I’ve been silent across the board – not participating in RA bulletin boards, not commenting on other people’s blogs. I want you to know, too, that if you’re on the list of blogs on my homepage, I still read you whenever you post. I’ll try to be better about commenting – it’s nice to know that people are out there!

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