Rheumatoid Arthritis is a pretty dreadful disease. It is debilitating, can be deforming, painful and so misunderstood. No one understands those words more than a person who suffers with it. Not only is it a physical disease it is an emotional disease.
Many may think RA is the same as arthritis or osteoporosis, though they are all painful, it is not. RA affects the immune system which in turn can affect the organs causing traumatic damage. Physically it can be harsh to your joints leaving you with unsightly disfigurements. Something that wears on you physically and mentally causing you to spend countless days in bed.
Rheumatoid Arthritis is unpredictable. Though medication is prescribed to control it, there are no guarantees that any medication will work. The DMARDS or injections medication or infusions don’t always offer the outcome we hope for. We still often find ourselves in bed or curled up somewhere nursing our pain. There may be temporary relief at best if we are lucky. We have to take this journey in order to keep this disease at bay to hopefully prevent further organ and joint damage. Do we succeed! The journey is always ongoing.
There is the emotional toll that no one realizes comes with having RA. Not being able to function normally makes life sad, hard and have us overwhelmed with guilt. Though everyone may not have the physical disabilities we are all saddled with more painful times than we can count. Looking normal is just that for us but we are reeling with pain even in times when we don’t show it. Yet there are those days when we actually cannot carry on. We aren’t able to take care of ourselves let alone others. This you see is where the emotional guilt takes over. We can’t bear not being able to take care of those in our lives. It is one of the most important losses that we face.
What everyone needs to understand, this disease absorbs our days. We work around it from the moment we wake up until we go to bed. From the pain we endure, to taking medication, to trying to function, to hoping it’s a good day and finally hoping for a good night. All of this due to the fact that we have an autoimmune disease that many think can be easily treatable. In reality, Rheumatoid Arthritis is very serious physically, emotionally and can be deadly. This is no myth.
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