No, my fingers are not going to drop off!

The day got off to a typical start today, not having time to thaw my hands out on arrival at the office I dashed straight into the conference room where the early morning meeting was being held.

There was a time a few years back when I used to spend the first 15 minutes or so of these meetings sitting on my hands, hoping that they would quickly change from the deathly white colour that they always assume when coming into the building from the cold outdoors, to a more 'normal' appearance. I don't know why I should be embarrassed to have other people see my hands like this, but I was. I'd just started a new job and didn't want to draw attention to myself. I lost count of the amount of times various people around the table would ask 'What on earth is the matter with your hands?'

These days I don't bother trying to hide my hands, I just try to explain that I suffer with Raynaud's and how it affects me. I still feel uncomfortable when people stare at my white fingers (particularly in the queue at the supermarket when I'm fumbling around trying to get hold of the right change after taking a bag of peas out of the freezer section!) but have decided it's better to try and educate people than have them remain in ignorance.

I don't think I've ever seen anyone with Raynaud's depicted on tv, but it would certainly help raise awareness if a character who suffers with the symptoms could be introduced to a soap or drama. I not talking about a major storyline, just something to make others aware that white fingers aren't 'abnormal'!

3 Replies

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  • I know exactly what you mean - I used to find it really embarrassing when my hands had gone white as well. It's not only the colour but that sort of waxy look they get - it's almost like they are fake hands!! Most people I work with know about my condition now - I also did a story in the Yorkshire Post last year to raise awareness about the condition. Everyone is used to me having my heater on next to me in a bid to keep warm! Last week I got in from the gym and it had turned really cold outside and despite various gloves my hands were really white. My partner made me a hot drink and he was really worried I was going to drop it - sometimes you just have to laugh about things. I have never been handed a cup of tea with such precision!!!

  • I can relate to this, I too was embrassed at the start, i really don't know why, maybe because of other peoples ignorance, I travel quite a bit with my job, so have met a lot of people along the way, some response well, and are interested in learning about it, a lot of people have never heard of raynauds, and then you just get people that think you are freak, and quite frankliy arn't worth bothering with, now i don't hide it, other peoples ignorance is there issue not mine.

  • My colleagues are quite used to me switching off the air conditioning in meeting rooms or wearing my silver gloves during meetings. If anyone ever asks, outside of my normal work colleagues, I just say that I have an overreactive circulatory system.

    It's nothing to be embarrassed about, it's a pain both literally & figuratively, but I gave up worrying about other people's perceptions of me a long time ago.

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