Autoimmune arthritis, lupus and other diseases are very invisible diseases. However, they do leave their marks. Paleness. Weakness. Hair loss from medicines. Braces. Crutches. Canes. Orthopaedic shoes. All sorts of battle scars.
A term I've always had a love hate relationship is the word deformity. When used correctly, it's a dramatic word that can bring a persons attention. But it can be used in a hurtful way- usually by ones tone of voice. Regardless, it's a completely correct fact when I say that I have a deformity.
I have very inverted thigh bones. While knock knees are not typically a problem in a healthy person, they can be a huge problem in people with arthritis because it means you move in a way that accommodates pain and inverted knees. Thus, my knees are really bad because I had hip arthritis when I was little. And they're quite a sight: always puffy from the fluid in my knee and touching each other. I've got long legs, so my knocking knees are more apparent. You can even tell they knock through my jeans. In fact, I can get my knees to go 180 degrees around- actually more.
Of course, I'm very lucky I only had two joints affected. I can only imagine what others who have had many joints affected go through.
Anyway, I'm proud of my knocking knees; My inverted bones. They're my battle scars. I'm proud of 'little' me not crying or complaining. I'm proud that I've made it to this point with only two joints that are different. It's nothing to be ashamed of. Willows bend and twist, and are yet so beautiful. Why should humans be different?