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RA Guy

Name: RA Guy

Location: United States and Bolivia, South America

Age: 40

Diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis at age 32. (Symptoms started at age 29.)



How has your condition affected you? I'm at a good place right now, and can definitely say that my condition has changed me for the better...although this hasn't always been the case. I've learned the beauty of slowing down, of going out to breathe fresh air, and of taking nothing for granted. I've also learned that so many people are there to help me and support me when I need it, and that counts for a lot. I'm in no way trying to underestimate the effect that the pain and disability has had on my life, which has been serious indeed...but as with anything else, it comes down to staying positive, and focusing on what I can control. I used to yearn for the life I might have had, had it not been for my rheumatoid arthritis...but I've since learned to appreciate the stronger person that I've become due to the health challenges that I face on a regular basis, and wouldn't change a thing.


What would you like for other people to know about your condition? I'm not a patient who suffers from rheumatoid arthritis. I'm a person who LIVES with rheumatoid arthritis.


What would you like to tell someone who is recently diagnosed with your condition? Things will definitely change more than you can imagine, and the pain will always be there...but with the right mindset and continued movement, there is a way to continue to live a happy and productive life. Use every challenge you encounter as an opportunity to learn something new about yourself. And always, always, always look on the bright side of things. It may not be easy, but it will be possible.


RA Guy’s Favorite Quote: "Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined." -Henry David Thoreau


RA Guy’s Blog: www.rheumatoidarthritisguy.com

Reader Comments (8)

So excited to see a new face up and to have it be RA Guy's! Couldn't agree more with the distinction between "suffering" and "living" with a chronic illness. <3

September 3, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAli

I love RA Guy's outlook. He is a true inspiration to those of us who are struggling to stay positive. Great portrait, Jodi!

September 3, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMargery

thank so much ali & margery!

September 4, 2013 | Registered CommenterJodi McKee

RA Guy - you look so GOOD. So happy to finally see what you look like and to have you feeling pretty good. I know that wasn't always the case. Yes, I LIVE with RA, I don't suffer from it. Keep up the positive attitudes!!!

September 7, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLeigh

RA Guy is one of my all-time favorite people...& I've never even met him! My daughter has--she's author of The Single Gal's Guide to Rheumatoid Arthritis. From the time he started his blog, he has provided information, tools, references, & a positive attitude to all who have RA or who love someone with RA. His journey hasn't been easy, but just look at where he is now! Thanks RA GUY--you rock!

June 27, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMillicent

hi millicent! yes, i know your daughter, too. she was the very first subject of my portrait project! :)

July 1, 2014 | Registered CommenterJodi McKee

I enjoy reading your blogs. I imagine it must be even harder explaining why you can't do things like heavy lifting as society sees you as a young, healthy man. I appear to be a young, fit female-little do they know that my rheumatoid factor has been in the hundreds. Then there are the assumptions I face daily as a minority and single mom, which a lot of people tell me are in my head. If only... When there are whispers that I don't go out much because of my ethnicity and its stereotype, it can be overwhelming! Not to mention rumors at work that I had an eating disorder, I had dropped down to 95 lbs as a result of the disease.

January 3, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJJ

Looks so good. Very inspirational.

January 14, 2015 | Unregistered Commentercelebrex cost

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