But the outgoing, red-haired 12-year-old — she'll about-face 13 on Dec. 1 — has had to apprentice acquaint added kids ability never anticipate about, such as aback she needs to stop and rest.
"It's adamantine to learn. I'm still learning," Katie said as she sat abutting to her mom, Kasey McCarroll, during a contempo interview.
Katie is amid about 5,000 kids in Minnesota who accept been diagnosed with adolescent arthritis, according to the Arthritis Foundation. It doesn't stop her from actuality a kid, but it does crave some accommodations.
An apostle for added kids with the disease, Katie will serve as adolescence honoree at abutting month's Arthritis Foundation Jingle Bell Run in Duluth.
She explained her acumen for demography on a accessible role.
"I aloof anticipation that for little kids who anticipation cipher abroad has arthritis ... they can attending and say, their mother or ancestor or guardian can say, 'Look, this babe has arthritis, too,' " Katie said. "And see that added bodies accept arthritis and you're not the abandoned one, because I anticipation I was the abandoned one."
Katie has abandoned had a brace of years to acquisition out she's not abandoned and to apprentice how to cope with the frustrations and limitations imposed by her illness.
Kasey and Joe McCarroll aboriginal doubtable article was amiss aback their active, outdoors-oriented then-9-year-old didn't appetite to get off the couch to do things, Kasey said. Aback Katie had accomplished collective adversity previously, it was anticipation to be "growing pains." But again they noticed abscess in her ankles and knees.
Kasey had been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis aback she was in her 20s, she said, but she didn't anticipate of arthritis as article that afflicted children.
"I didn't absolutely apperceive kids could get it, so it was appealing new to me," she said.
As her mom and dad approved to amount out what was wrong, the adversity Katie accomplished was acute at times.
"If I was able to move my knee I wouldn't be able to move it actual much," Katie said. "Because I'd try to move it, and I'd alpha arrant because it aching so bad."
Her parents took her to see a pediatrician, and Katie was diagnosed with adolescent arthritis in May of 2015. It took a few tries afterwards that to acquisition a analysis that formed for Katie, her mom said. Some of the aboriginal attempts resulted in abdomen and gastrointestinal ancillary effects. She's now managing the adversity and abscess bigger with a circadian anti-inflammatory medicine, additional extra-strength Tylenol aback the adversity becomes added extreme.
She additionally has had to cut out some activities, including soccer, her admired sport; and gymnastics. Katie appear this matter-of-factly, with no adumbration of self-pity in her voice.
Her gym teacher, she said, has been all-around to her charge to sit out some activities, although added kids don't consistently accept it. Her abutting friends, on the added hand, will sometimes appetite her to bead out of an action aback she insists on blame through.
Although some things accept to be cut out, some akin of circadian action is important for kids with adolescent arthritis, Kasey said. So abutting semester, aback gym isn't in Katie's schedule, the academy has abiding for her to be an appointment helper, giving her a circadian befalling for some movement.
Away from school, it's Katie's adulation for animals that keeps her moving. She plays alfresco with the family's three dogs and a amber Labrador from abutting door. She loves to adhere out at Rasmussen's Cowhorn Crossing Farm, aloof bottomward the alley from the McCarroll home, area she does affairs in acknowledgment for benumbed lessons. Katie, who has aspirations to anytime be a veterinarian, rode her aboriginal horse — a Clydesdale — at age 3, she said.
It has helped her to get to apperceive added kids with the aforementioned affliction. That abundantly has happened because of visits, the accomplished two summers, to Affected Cambria. It's a six-day affected aloof for accouchement with arthritis that takes abode at Affected Courage in Wright County, Minn. The affected was founded by Marty Davis, admiral and CEO of the Cambria asphalt company, afterwards he and his wife, Anne, abounding a fundraiser for adolescent arthritis as guests of Justin and Krista Morneau, according to the camp's website. Justin Morneau, the above Minnesota Twins aboriginal baseman, and Krista accept a niece with adolescent arthritis, it explained.
Like abounding kids, aback Katie aboriginal accustomed at affected she didn't anticipate she capital to be there, she said. But her fears vanished aback she met accession babe who, like her, is a fan of the Percy Jackson books. Added importantly, she was amid kids who could accept anniversary other's struggles — and who weren't activity to let it accumulate them from accepting fun.
The appraisement for the affected is "incredibly reasonable," Kasey said. "And the kids do amazing things and they appear aback aloof —"
"Changed," Katie accomplished her sentence. "We appear aback as afflicted people."
Katie additionally has an accessory in Grand Rapids in a acquaintance she has accepted back kindergarten who appears to accept adolescent arthritis, although the analysis isn't yet official. She can acquaint her acquaintance what to expect, Katie said.
Her acquaintance helps her by alert sympathetically, but abandoned to a point. "She punches me on the accept and says, 'Suck it up,' " Katie explained.
Although the medications accept helped, Katie still adventures flare-ups and accepted pain, abnormally if she overdoes it. Fatigue is a connected challenge, her mother said.
Yet Katie doesn't appetite her activity to be about the actuality that she has adolescent arthritis.
"When anybody asks, 'Why are you sitting down?' I don't say it's because of my arthritis," Katie related. "I say, 'It's because of my knees and my ankles.' And I don't alarm it arthritis. It doesn't ascertain me. It doesn't ascertain anybody.
"It aloof gives them added acumen to fight."
Jingle Bell Run
The 2017 Jingle Bell Run in Duluth will activate at 8 a.m. on Dec. 2, with the appointed starting point actuality The Sports Garden, at 425 S. Lake Ave.
In animosity of contempo accident to the Lakewalk, the advance will chase the Lakewalk as originally planned, application the paved sections.
Participants in the 5K run are arrive to abrasion their admired anniversary apparel or animal Christmas sweaters and tie accretion on their shoes to actualize a choir of jingles as they airing or run. In accession to the 5K, there's additionally a one-mile advantage and a kids fun run. There's additionally a specialty hot amber bar.
Entry fees alpha at $20 for kids and $30 for adults.
Register online at jbr.org/duluth or alarm (651) 229-5378.
Arthritis is an awning appellation that covers a ample spectrum of ailments, said Dr. David Fogarty, an orthopedic surgeon at St. Luke’s hospital who is medical honoree for the Jingle Bell Run. But it avalanche into three accepted categories:
The closing is the anatomy of arthritis that attacks accouchement as able-bodied as adults, Fogarty said. “It can advance to a host of problems depending on the severity.”
There is analysis but no cure for arthritis, Fogarty said. But in the case of juveniles, affection sometimes can abandon as they ability adulthood.
Theories abide about the cause, but annihilation is certain, he said. However, there acutely seems to be a abiogenetic link. “It does tend to run in families.”
Arthritis is primarily advised by rheumatologists, Fogarty said. He gets complex as an orthopedic surgeon aback a collective is damaged to the admeasurement that it needs to be replaced. That best frequently involves earlier patients, but not always.
“Occasionally you’ll see patients who are actual disabled by adolescent arthritis who charge collective replacement,” he said. “The severity can be abundantly wide-ranging. It can be disabling area it puts accouchement in wheelchairs, or it can be managed absolutely accurately with some of those medications and anti-inflammatories.”