Andres: Sometimes those around the patient can be more objective about what they see happening with the patient. I was able to tell the doctor what I noticed on a day-to-day basis. Stephanie went through some tough times. She was in a wheelchair for more than a year. I had to carry the weight for both of us, physically and emotionally. That meant cooking, cleaning, combing her hair and helping her get dressed.

Stephanie: As a wife, of course I wanted to support Andres. Over time, I learned how to do that as an RA patient. The biggest wake-up call for me was realizing that my choices affected him. I remember one day early in our marriage wanting to surprise Andres. I spent all day cleaning our home and making it sparkle. I thought he would be so grateful, so I pushed through the pain. When he got home, my joints were swollen. I was in so much pain, I could barely get off the couch. He got angry and told me it wasn’t fair that he had to see me in such pain because I wanted a clean house for him. That event opened my eyes to see that I was not the only one going through this. Even if I was okay with the results of my actions, I wasn’t the only one affected. Before, I had a mindset that RA wasn’t going to get in the way of my everyday life, no matter how painful. What I saw was that it was getting in the way of our life. It finally hit me that we were doing this together… VectraDA Blog