IUS employee turns illnesses into story

IUS Horizon

When diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis and Fibromyalgia in 2005 at the age of 38, store manager of the IUS Bookstore, Julie Faulds, could have just thrown in the towel. Instead, she wrote a book.

“‘Chronically Positive’ is part memoir and part self help,” Faulds said. “It is based on my journey after being diagnosed with both illnesses.”

Neither rheumatoid arthritis nor fibromyalgia have a cure.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic form of arthritis with symptoms, including fatigue, joint pain and stiffness.

As it progresses, rheumatoid arthritis may feel like the flu, with achiness, muscle aches and loss of appetite.

Fibromyalgia is one of the most common arthritis-related illnesses.

Symptoms include widespread muscle, joint pain and fatigue. Fibromyalgia can also lead to depression.

“It was my hope when I was writing it that a reader would realize that no matter what type of difficulty they were facing, there is a positive side to it,” Faulds said.

Faulds could have let her illnesses take over and allowed her life to become all about her disability, but, instead, she learned to count her blessings and give thanks for all the good things she has in her life.

“These days, I live with rather than suffer from my illnesses,” Faulds said. “In my book, I discuss the steps I took to get to this place and I believe that any one can make that same change using any or all of those same steps.”

Faulds book took roughly eight to nine months to complete.

“I am my own worst critic, so I did a lot of editing,” Faulds said.

“Chronically Positive” was published in January 2011 by Pintsize Productions and is sold at Barnes and Noble Bookstores.

Faulds said she wanted to write since she was very young.

“I could picture myself in New York City, living in a loft, writing the great American novel on my typewriter,” Faulds said.

As an adult, writing is just something she does for herself.

“I have had a blog for several years now, and it was from that blog, and the feedback I received from there that the idea of completing a book was born,” Faulds said.