Open Your Eyes!

I’M SUPER EXCITED ABOUT THIS POST TODAY!! There are many firsts for this post and I’m proud to share it with all of you! Okay, here it goes!!

First, I’ve decided that I will continue to post at least once a week to my blog. This is a pretty big commitment for me considering I’m in a ton of other projects including a full-time job, full-time volunteering, full-time wife and full-time auto-immune disease. YIKES!!

Second, this is my first Blog Carnival. I was inspired by a couple of other blogger/twitter friends to give it a try. They know how heavily involved I am in the organization I’m about to share with you (and the organization that saved my life!), so thank you Felicia at www.feliciafibro.com and Jenna at www.artappleaday.com. You’ve given me the encouragement to try this out!

Last, but certainly not least, it’s my first Vlog! Okay, well actually it’s my first VIDEO!! EvEr!! YAY!! I’ve never done a Vlog before, so please be kind!  If you like what I’ve done, or want to know how I did it, please feel free to leave me comments. I want to know what you thought!! And if you loved the video, you are just AWESOME!

So, with all of that being said, I encourage you to watch the video first and then read my little script below. I’m trying to keep it simple, so, here it goes…

If it wasn’t for the Denver Arthritis Walk, a walk supported by the Arthritis Foundation, I would of never found my voice about my arthritis. Today, I would still be suffering in silence. Okay, well maybe my husband, family, and a few close friends would hear the agony of the pain I go through, but the Arthritis Walk really opened me up to a community of people who ‘get’ the type of pain I go through on a daily basis. They understand the amount of side effect drugs I’m on because of the biologic drug I’m taking to prevent further damage to my joints. I’ve been donating my time (ie, blood, sweat and tears) to this organization for the last 5 years and I have enjoyed every minute of it!!

The Arthritis Foundation is the leading health organization addressing the needs of some 40 million Americans living with arthritis, the nation’s most common cause of disability. Founded in 1948 and headquartered in Atlanta, GA, the Arthritis Foundation has multiple service points located throughout the country. The mission of the Foundation is to improve lives through leadership in the prevention, control and cure of arthritis and related diseases.

The Arthritis Walk® is the Arthritis Foundation’s nationwide team event that raises funds to fight arthritis. Our rallying cry, Let’s Move Together is a nationwide movement that encourages people to move daily for better health to prevent or treat arthritis. Moving just 30 minutes per day can ease joint pain, improve mobility and reduce fatigue.

I can say to you from personal experience, that after learning how good movement is for your arthritis, I instantly became hooked on the Arthritis Walk. It’s fundamental purpose is to encourage people to move!! I am proud to say that because of this new movement, I have taken it upon myself to teach myself how to move safely and effectively for my own arthritis. This is how I was saved!!

How did I do it? First, it took a lot of debate, encouragement, and research to find the right movement for me and my level. After that step, the rest was easy and FUN! The exercise I do 3 times a week…YES, 3 TIMES A WEEK…is Zumba! I was on my way to more blood tests, MRI, bone density scans, X-rays, CT Scans, and anything else you can image in order to find out the reason behind the increase of hip pain. After discovering I could not afford half of the tests they wanted to do on me, I took it upon myself to find another solution. In the past, I’ve always had some kind of exercise routine, but stopped when the pain started to show signs. Then it got worse. After the evaluation of myself, I decided to try moving again. I’m happy to say, it worked!! If it wasn’t for the Arthritis Foundation, its new nationwide movement –Let’s Move Together– then I would probably be looking at scheduling surgery for my hip.

What I love about the walk is that it is entirely put on by a group of volunteers. Volunteers coming together for a great cause to put on a fantastic event. Allowing others who suffer in silence to get up, enjoy a beautiful day out in the park, bring awareness to an awful disease, and to show support for one another. We also have a lot of fun at our walk too! In the past we’ve had a fun run where kids can chase after a chicken to win a prize, a cupcake decorating party, and games on what it feels like to tie shoes with arthritis. If it wasn’t for this walk, my co-workers, most of my friends, and a few family members wouldn’t have any idea that I suffer daily with anklyosing spondylitis.

You can learn more about arthritis, more specifically the 100+ different types of arthritis, and to find a local arthritis walk near you by visiting www.letsmovetogther.org or www.arthritis.org

Love,

Kelby

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7 thoughts on “Open Your Eyes!

  1. I am immensely proud of you for having the courage to do all that you do to help put a face on arthritis. I could totally cry watching you in this video, Kelby. Because of you, other people who suffer can be validated and encouraged to speak out. You go girl! May there never come a time where you can’t walk or dance, but know that I will be there to carry you should it happen. I love you, my little Peachey.

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  2. Kelby,
    Your video is so awesome! I love it and I know that others will too. You are brave and courageous and a beautiful spirit. I’m so glad we met and Doug and I will be right there with you walking for a cure!
    Big Hug!
    Jenna

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  3. I’m super excited to hear you’ll be posting weekly!

    I can’t put my finger on why, but something in your video really touched me. I found myself tearing up about half way through. Even though we’ve all heard the statistics, it is great to hear how much moving helped your AS!

    As you know, The Arthritis Walk is an event near and dear to me as well. I love that the Arthritis Foundation uses funds to support not only arthritis, but arthritis-related conditions (like fibromyalgia and lupus)! I’ll be walking along side you too, just in a different city!

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  4. I know, I’m liking this a bit late but it is good info ; ) I am thinking maybe a doggy walk for Ankylosing Spondylitis?

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    • @Stephanie – Thanks for your comments! The Arthritis Walk, supported by the Arthritis Foundation does a “Waggers are Welcome”. I bring my dog to the event and walk with him. 🙂 There is an entire section devoted to dogs!! My dog can get a massage and even his own goody bag. I love that I can walk with my dog and support a great cause!

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