Old Lady versus The Great Wall

  The bitter November wind thrust its cold breath towards me, breaching my layers of clothing. Dry flakes drifted down from an overcast sky coating the stone steps with a thin layer of snow. I stood on the ground and gazed up at sharp peaks that looked as if they could pierce the cloud cover….

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Eastern Techniques

  The giant apothecary in Beijing’s Chinese College of Medicine rose up before us with hundreds of drawers containing all the herbs necessary for health and wellness. The tour guide led us to the second floor where exam rooms peeked out from the walls. We entered a spacious room where bean bags huddled in the middle…

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The First Swim

  The summer solstice delivered rain and overcast skies the first eight days after its arrival. My joints raged against the pressure of dense clouds and damp weather, while the humidity continued to build – when the break finally came, I woke for the first time without swelling, my stiff joints becoming fluid after only…

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Warm Mugs

I huddled under the bus shelter as a cold mist sprinkled down from the sky. The promise of a warm summer day perished under the dense cover of grey clouds. I boarded the bus, wrapping my cold puffy fingers around the metal pole, grumbling at my desperate attempt to remain standing while the bus driver…

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Bad Medicine

The aqua package promised relief from the pain of arthritis – a mild roll-on designed to help reduce the discomfort of inflammation. I read the directions on the box – there was a warning that the medication might cause mild skin irritation or redness during the first few times of use, but would eventually subside…

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The Invisible Disease

I boarded the bus during rush hour, cramming myself into a sea of people. I squeezed my way to the back and grasped a metal pole, wincing at the sharp pain shooting through my fingers. The old lady had swept in with the rain and squeezed her bitter hands over my joints. I held my…

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Anniversary

On our first anniversary, Hydroxychloroquine took me to the ophthalmologist. We arrived at a small quaint building, painted white, the outside decorated with bright pink and orange flowers. Cherry blossoms lined the street with their crimson veils. Tiny petals speckled the sidewalks, leading us to our first analysis of our life together. I sat in…

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The Sole Mate

I scuttled across the wet ground, ducking beneath my umbrella as the rain pelted down. My left foot plunked into a shallow puddle; within moments, a distinct squishing sensation accompanied each new step and my foot grew cold and wet… A large selection of boots was displayed on one wall of the store. I looked…

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The Warm Bath

The water flowed from the spout crashing into the tub. Goosebumps danced on my skin in anticipation of dipping into a hot bath, liberating me from the pain of arthritis. A light mist drifted over the mirrors creating a pleasant haze with a sweet scent and a warming ambience. I lowered my body into the…

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If You Like What You See

Some people have inquired if there’s a place to donate on my blog. This is for those who would like to offer extra support for my work and I thank you for this.

A bigger thank you to all my readers who offer ongoing support simply by stopping by for a visit. I enjoy writing and interacting with you.

About me

J.G. Chayko is a writer, actress, and international arthritis advocate who’s been involved in theatre for more than 30 years and has published poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction.