I Love and Hate My Life
Rheumatoid arthritis has caused a real dichotomy in my life. It caused so much turmoil but also some wonderful things.
I hate RA, but I'm also grateful for it
More often than not, I want to curl up in a ball and cry the days away, but other times, I am so grateful for what the condition has taught me and the door that opened because of it. I’ll be honest, this article will be completely back and forth. I will be up at one time; then, I will drop to my lowest. Do you experience similar feelings?
School and work
I hate that I couldn’t finish school and withdrew for 14 years.
I love that I could work and solidify what I wanted to do with my life by working as a veterinary technician.
I hate that I had to wait 14 years to continue my veterinary medicine journey.
I love that I found other careers I am good at (teacher, climber, writer).
I love that my worldview got significantly larger by experiencing different things.
I hate that I had to do that to the confinement of the RA.
I hate that my experiences were cut short (time-wise) so I wouldn’t flare.
I hate that this horrible disease dictated my life.
I hate that I didn’t have my peers' endurance and pain-free experience.
I love that I learned how to manage my time, check my emotions, and problem-solve my life.
I love that I became more organized, learned to manage my time, and learned to slow down and pace myself.
I love that I experienced more quiet moments and appreciated the smaller things in life.
I hate that I had to.
I love that I made new friends I never would have met if I didn’t have RA.
I don’t hate anything about that.
I hate that I couldn’t work full time, and I felt the financial pressure while balancing increased medical bills.
I hate that.
I hate that I had to wait for my life to start.
I hate that with years of part-time work, I would begin and end veterinary school with debt that would last past my lifetime.
I love that I became money-savvy and somehow managed to grow a good amount of savings.
I love that I was able to spend more time with my pets up until their deaths.
I love that we took naps together every day like a pile of ferrets.
I love that they were with me almost every day for over a decade.
I love that if I had started working sooner, I wouldn't have spent nearly as much time with them.
I hate that there were days I couldn’t take care of them to my fullest caliber.
I loved our nap times because I like to be asleep.
I love that my pets napped with me.
I hate that I needed 12 hours of sleep to function during the other 12 hours.
Symptoms and medications
I hate the pain and swelling that slowed me down. I already only had a few hours of the day, and now, I had to move slowly, too.
I hate that my symptoms were unpredictable so I could never plan ahead.
I love that I learned to be more spontaneous. I rolled with the punches and found the silver lining.
I hate the medications, the bitter steroids, the chalky pain medications.
I hate that I have to take them every day.
I love that I have access to my medications.
I love my meds.
I love that I tolerate them (mostly) and that I haven’t suffered terrible disabilities because of them.
I hate my meds.
I hate the side effects.
I hate the pain of the injections.
I hate that I take 12 disgusting pills every morning and evening.
I love my infusion.
I love that I tolerate it.
I love how well it works (think 24 hours).
I hate having to pay and sit for an hour every month.
I hate that the dose doesn’t last the full 30 days.
I hate that I am pumped with an immune suppressant that puts me at higher risk of other sicknesses.
The phyical toll of RA
I hate how rheumatoid arthritis and all of its components have destroyed my body.
I hate it because of the joint swelling, destruction of the cushioning between my joints, the osteoporosis, the dryness, and the lack of healing.
I hate that this affects my whole body.
I hate that I will have this for the rest of my life.
I hate that rheumatoid arthritis affects my entire life. I hate that it’s my constant companion. I love that it has changed me as a person. I love that I have learned so much from this disease. I love that there is always a silver lining; I just have to look for it.
I love my life. I hate my life.
Have you experienced these conflicting emotions? Leave me an “I love….., I hate….” Comment down below!
What lifestyle changes have you found to be most helpful in managing your RA?
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