You Might Have RA If"¦

Patient Expert

A sense of humor is a gift. The ability to laugh at oneself is an even greater gift. Those of us living with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) have many challenges, but laughter in stressful situations can lift us up. Not all of the following situations are funny, but they are all honest.

You might have RA if...

You have 50 pairs of shoes in your closet, and none of them are comfortable.

You only go to stores that have motorized scooters available to their patrons.

You have at least one of every over-the-counter topical pain relieving creams that exists.

Part of your morning routine is holding your hands under warm running water.

You have cried in the shower, so no one could hear you.

You have practiced saying, "I'm fine," with a smile on your face, while standing in front of the mirror.

You have more than one 7-day pill planner sitting on your kitchen counter.

Your medication is stored in three see-through plastic containers that lock.

You are afraid to go to the ER because you might be branded a "drug seeker."

You look forward to naps.

You have a huge calendar to keep track of all of your medical appointments.

The pharmacist knows your first and last name, and your date of birth without asking.

You know what a "rheumatoid arthritis sweat" is...

And, you dress in layers so you are ready for a "rheumatoid arthritis sweat."

You rest an entire day before you have a social or medical commitment.

You rest an entire day after you have a social or medical commitment.

You know what a biologic is.

I know you could all add to this list. Feel free to leave a few of your own.

My wish for you is the ability to laugh when appropriate, and to cry when needed. Never underestimate the power of laughter to heal.

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