Stress Bunny & Loving It: Arthritis Awareness Month

First, a note: If you live in Canada, today's election is a nailbiter. If you can vote, please take the time to do so. If you don't, it's a vote for Harper and dude's gotta go...

And now for the post:

On Friday, Laurie called me a "stress bunny." She's entirely right, but there is a very good reason for the stress. Remember the big projects I moaned about last week? One of them has just launched.

May is National Arthritis Awareness Month in the US and over at my place of employment, we have Big Plans. It started out very reasonable. A couple of interviews, maybe a small contest. And then we got all sorts of good ideas, pursued them all based on the assumption that if half of them worked, it would be fantastic. Turns out that a lot of them worked out (yay!) and some lead to other ideas and before we knew it, things had gotten severely out of hand. Don't get me wrong, it's the sort of out of hand that's really exciting, but if I think too closely about what exactly I have to do over the next 4-6 weeks, I start whimpering, so denial is the word of the day.

So what is all this excitement about? Throughout the month of May, MyRACentral will be featuring lots of great articles, including interviews will well known people who live with RA. I tried to interest Sir Christopher Lee in having a chat with me – y’know, what with us being RA peeps and all - but for some odd reason, his representative never replied to my very nice letter. This might be a little illustration of how out of hand things got, because it seemed entirely reasonable to believe that I'd hear back from them. It could've been a terrific way to finish a month-long celebration and it did not escape my attention that every geek I know would be chartreuse with envy. So, Sir Christopher? If you're out there, and can use a break from filming The Hobbit, shoot me an e-mail and we'll set up a time to talk.

Where was I? Right. The festivities. We also have contests every week, May 2, 9, 16 and 23 and you don't have to have RA to enter. You do, however, have to be a US resident - I don't quite know how to get it international, but we might figure that out by next year. The prizes are CVS gift certificates to help the winners buy meds (or nail polish, if that's what rocks their boats) and I'm really excited about the whole thing.

The goal of it all is to raise awareness about arthritis. Millions of people live with chronic illnesses like RA, lupus, psoriatic arthritis and all the rest that fall under the arthritis umbrella. On top of that, there's osteoarthritis and more of us experience that every day. The Arthritis Foundation believes that's unacceptable and y’know? I think that's a terrific starting point.

You all know at least one person who has RA: me. Many of you live with it yourself or other chronic conditions or disabilities. And if you plan to live past the age of 40, chances are you will be experiencing a dollop of osteoarthritis yourself. You have a vested interest in this.So... for the month of May, please help us raise awareness about arthritis - talk about it, let others know about what MyRACentral is doing, come on over and enter a contest - the first one started earlier today - and if you have Twitter or are on Facebook, please consider adding our RA Awareness Twibbon designed by ThriveWithRA to your profile picture.

It's going to be a lot of work, but I'm going to love every minute of it. We have come so far already - let's kick arthritis to the curb!