Daily Struggles of Living with Rheumatoid Arthritis

Hollybgroovin Health Guide
  • Is it worth it?  That is something I have to ask myself everyday.  As a rheumatoid arthritis sufferer, you probably have had to ask yourself the same question.  It’s also probably one of the most important questions you'll face.


    What am I able to do?

    Everyday I have to ask myself, “What am I able to do today?”  I have to evaluate my pain level, determine what needs to be done, and determine what I am actually able to do.  If I am in a lot of pain, I may not even be able to get out of bed.  If I am doing all right I may be able to get some things done around my house.  And if I am doing extremely well, I may even feel like running errands on top of my daily chores.  Then there are the times when I have to ask myself if it is worth it.

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    Is it worth it?

    Last weekend, my kids and I drove six hours to Texas only to spend the night, spend time with my husband for four hours, then turn around and drive back.  While my boys were excited to see their dad, they were also disappointed because I had promised to do something fun with them but wasn’t able to because the drive had caused me so much pain.  I assured them that I would take them to do something fun this week to make it up to them.


    Today my five year old came up to me and asked, “Mom, can you take us to the park?”  Unfortunately it’s something we rarely do due to the fact that I don’t leave the house unless I have to because I tire so easily.  But today I wanted to keep my promise that I would make it up to them.  So I sat there and thought about it.  If I take my boys to the park my five year old is going to want me to give him a piggy-back ride and push him on the swings.  The actual park is quite far from the parking lot so that will require a lot of walking.  Then, my eight year old will get stuck on the monkey bars so I will have to pull him down when he does.  Then I will have to sit in the sun for a bit and walk all the way back to the car when they are done.  It is going to be exhausting, and I know that it will cause quite a bit of pain in the morning.  So I have to ask myself, “Is it worth it?” 


    Yes, it is worth it!

    The fact is that sometimes I have to pick and chose the things that are worth causing me a little more pain.  I know my limits, and I know what I can and can’t do.  But sometimes there are things that are much more important than my pain.  Sometimes there are things that I can’t pass up because someday they will turn into beautiful memories.  So is it worth it?  Definitely!!  I went to that park and played with the boys.  We had so much fun, and it was so good to here them laugh and see them smile.  We even went and all got slushies, their favorite!  I had so much fun and wouldn’t trade this day for anything!  And while I had to spend some extra time taking a hot bath to soothe my aching joints, and while I know tomorrow I will be in more pain, just remembering the look on my boys face while they were playing at that park made it all worth it!


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    What’s more important?

    Yes, we know our limits.  We know what we can and cannot handle.  But sometimes we have to decide what is more important than spending a day on the couch in pain.  What’s more important to me, you ask?  My kids!  They are the ones who are able to make me smile through the pain.  They are the ones who lift my spirit when I am feeling down.  They are the ones who make it “worth it”!

Published On: April 16, 2008