Change your mind ~ change your body

Posts tagged “rheumatoid arthritis


About the year of 2014 and what is coming in 2015

Hello guys!


I know it has been so long since I’ve sum up my goings in here. But I promise I’ll try to do it more often this upcoming year. I have so many plans and my life has FINALLY started to roll to right direction – well, the direction I wanted it to go for so long!

If I should check how my promises for the year 2014 went. Here they are!



Saerwen’s goals for the year 2014!


– Well I think I was surprisingly healthy, but towards the end of the year I had one flue and really bad stomach flue. Had like 5 flare ups during the whole year which isn’t much.

2. Get in to school – finally

– YES. Yes I did! I’m currently in school for becoming a laboratory assistant and going to definitely apply further after finishing this school. Now I feel like I’ve started to work towards my ultimate profession and it makes me feel super greatful.

3. Lose some fat and get my bf around 20%

– I didn’t get around 20 %, but I did loose some fat and gain a lot of muscle. Which is good. Although now looking back this promise I feel a bit silly, but hey, that’s what I wanted and that’s what I aimed for! Haha.

4. Live life

– I have experience so many new things past year. I went so see ice hockey, went on a cruice, got into this floorball team, got plenty of new friends… Woah. So much happend in this year. In good in bad. And I can say finally that I LIVED the year 2014.


Last year had in one of the most shcoking thing in my life. Never thought I would be experience that much pain as I did, even though I kind of understand it – believe it or not. Life is too short to live hoping your dream come true than making it true and I got cruel reminder about it. But I’ve moved on and let go of it. It hurt and almost tore me apart, but I’m stronger than that. I wish best of the luck all of them and have no hard feelings!

It’s been really amazing rollacoaster ride though. Not all that bad. So many people I wanna thank about this amazing year, but one above all is my bf. He’s been my rock when everything else has come falling down and I thank him for putting up with my sh*t. I got lucky, truly did! And the other is my family – having that one place to go and turn everything off is truly a blessing.

He’s also one of the main reasons I started playing floorball again. I didn’t have any faith in my skills and I still am a rookie taking consideration my age, but I never would have thought that I would be able to be part of something so amazing as my team. They are amazing, talented bunch of ladies and I am so honored to be able to practice and spend time with them. Go Welhot!


Here’s pictures about the year 2014 and the best parts of it!





So what am I wishing for the year 2015

1. Keeping my health as good as it is now

2. Be a much better floorball player

3. Be successful at school

4. Learn to be as positive person towards myself as I am towards others


This year’s wishes are actually more mental than physical. Yes I wanna keep improving my skills as a player but more importantly I want to learn deal with myself as a player. As this new me that I am these days. My life is hectic, my life is living a day by day hour by hour and can’t much schedule my life ahead. So I need to learn to except it and grow with it. It is a pretty amazing year coming and I wanna make the most of it!


Maria Saerwen

The art of dealing with expectations

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There are several reasons why I go to the gym rarely and have the privilege to be able to workout inside my own house. Reasons like money, time, distance, don’t like people staring at me etc, etc. But probably one of the major reasons is my illness and how unpredictable it can be.

Not only I battle with arthritis everyday I suffer another chronic pain due to some shit that went down in my life – you can read it from my page if ya feel to up there “The broken curtain call” if you’re up to some really raw inside view of really heinous fuck ups in human body. You’ve been warned

I’ve been on this journey to let myself go of the past and just be fine with the fact that I had some intestinal shit and I’ll have it till the rest of my life. It ain’t the topic to be discussed about with everyone but it is still a huge part of my life.

I have significantly lower voice than any regular woman. All this is due to my chronic acid reflux that I’ve battle since my early childhood. I can’t eat one/two hours before lifting because if I lift with full stomach it’ll all come up in an instant. Nice? Not really. And it burns. It literally burns your esophagus and vocal chords.

I’ve had problems with my bowels since I can remember but due to some circumstances doctors have never been able to pinpoint what’s exactly wrong. At one point as a child I stopped eating since my stomach was in pain constantly. I’ve been examined so many times and so many ways that I can’t even remember all of the procedures. I have had all the classical symptoms of Crohn’s disease  but they’ve never been able to diagnose it ’cause the meds I take for my RA works also to Crohn’s. In my mind I know I have it or something similar and I just try to live the way that it won’t get irritated as it did in junior high school – constant stomach pain through the last year. Nothing helped.













And yet all these things feels so minor when I compare them to arthritis, how it keeps trying to put me down again and again. Not only I can keep all the above things in secret but this I can’t. Even when I applied to study this spring I had to inform the school that I have this “disability” as they call it and I needed to do the extra work to just prove that I could study in the field I’ve chosen to apply. I’ll need medical certificate and talk about my current health and future with the teachers there. It’s like no matter what I do I’ll always be the one with the disadvantage.

The one who might get sick in future.

The one who might not be able to do this job in a long hall.

But y’know what? I’m up for the challenge. To get even an invite to that exam – which means I’m 1/3 of the applicants who did! – was a one small but great victory to me. I cried when my sister called me and told me that the  mailman had remembered me. I had to sat down, cry and smile. And all I was thinking “Now it’s up to me. I can do this!”

I’ve fought this fight for over 12 years and will battle it till my dying days. I have prove some of them already wrong. This illness is so individual and mine has been under a great control for the past years – minus these few bumps in the road but hey, it’s like someone having a really bad cold and can’t workout or go to work right? But I won’t lie to you – this fight is really tiring. It won’t even start or stop, it’s continuous fight of proving everyone wrong.

















To prove them that I can do WHAT I SAY I can do.

I know my limits. I know the horror pictures that people have created for my future. I know them all. But I also know how you can over come them. How you can try to avoid them. How I work every single day to be able to function as any one of you. And I hope, I really do hope, that someday all of this will be worth it. All the pains and aches in the gym when you feel like your muscles are ready for more but my joints ain’t. How I need to be patient and let my body recover after a flare up.

Every time I grab that bar and deadlift I feel like my knuckles are gonna fall in to pieces – but the pain is worth it. Even when the weight can’t never be my maximum it’s still weight. And that weight is far easier to lift even with a little pain than the expectations and discouragement I face everyday.














Hope you all have a nice Saturday! Just thought I should let my feelings out. Let me know what you thought about the text!


The second home – Missing every moment of it

I’ve always enjoyed working out since it’s always been” my thing”. Since I got diagnosed at the age of 8 with rheumatoid arthritis exercising and being active has been huge part of my life. I kind of grew up to liking it since I can still remember all those annoying group classes at the rehabilitation center that I hated to be participated in. But like my physio told me then and there “It’s not only good for your health but your mind to try things out of your comfort zone, just for once”. So true.

Now, almost 12 years later, I can still remember those words which my physio told me when I was having my tantrum about going and doing some group pilates class at the age of 10 or 11. With her pushing and the help with everyone else that were “forced” to participate I thank them a lot. I miss them. All of them. Some of you may not know but we had here in Finland one of the leading hospitals for rheumatoid arthritis patients and everyone who had something similar condition. Then the government decided at the spring 2010 that it won’t finance the rehabilitation patients in there and it wanted to publicly ask for bids for providing some service from any other rehabilitation center.

I’ve never felt so lost than I felt then. I felt like I was being abandon – being able to go there almost 10 years to same doctor to same physio and have same people taking care of me was so easy! They knew me as a person not as a name on the paper. I remember how I woke up one morning to leave to breakfast and my doctor came across me the hallway with her coffee cup in other hand and papers on the other and she greeted me “Good morning girl! Did you sleep well?” I mean how many places does that really happen, IN HOSPITAL?! It never felt like hospital to me. I spend so much time there that it literally became like my second home. I had the same nurse almost every time I went there and we talked about our lives not only me and my illness.

Not to mention all the friends I’ve made there and I saw regular basis on there since they came from there all around Finland.

The doctor that I had there was the best. She never told me I couldn’t do something. When I expressed that I wanted to try to be a firefighter everyone – including my mom and dad – were horrified and tried to talk me out of it. When we sat down with my doc she looked me in the eyes and said “Kat, I don’t ever wanna tell you that you can’t do something. You can do anything you want, but hope you understand why everyone is so concerned about your dream?” I nodded shyly when she talk to my parents and then she looked at me again and I saw how her eyes were tearing up. “I don’t want to crush anyone dreams and especially not yours. You’re now in excellent condition and if you want I’ll write you that kind of papers that after that it’s up to you if you get in.”

Those words are still very clear in my mind after so many years. How she almost started crying and emphasized how she never wanted to tell me not to try. She truly cared about me but also knew that then and there I could have been able to try and maybe succeed. And that she would have gave me her full support. I didn’t get it then but now when I think of it it makes me feel like I wanna cry – she believed in me when no one else did. And I would need that kind of support still.

The last week just before they went down I was there for a week. The last Thursday that my nurse was on her shift since she had Friday off was awful. When she came to me at the hallway I knew it was the goodbye time – and I totally broke down. Even before she reached out to me to hug me I was already crying and saying “This ain’t fair”. It wasn’t. It still ain’t. So many things were left to say.

I never got to thank my physiotherapist there, since she wasn’t there during that last week. It eats me up the most since she was the one who really got me into being active and challenged this stubborn little kid. We didn’t always see eye to eye – well, we rarely saw eye to eye haha – but her courage and patience with me was amazing. She made me attend the most awfullest group things were I was like the only under 50 person and etc etc. But in between those sessions she thought me probably the most important thing I ever could have learned: it doesn’t matter what you do, when you do or at which age – as long as you do SOMETHING. If I could just shout out and let her know how much I appreciate her hard work I would so do it!

I owe a huge thanks to the whole staff of our section in that building. All the nurses, all the physiotherapists, ophthalmologist, occupational therapist, dentists, doctors, you name them. Without those ten years with the best care of the whole wide world I would have never got this good chance to be as healthy and live a normal life as possible. I’m living prove what early prevention can be at it’s best. People can’t see outside of me that I have something as hard to deal with as RA and yet I still find myself struggle the most common things that I struggled at the age of 8.

You never know how good the things are until you loose them for good.