Spontaneity: A Side Effect of Rheumatoid Arthritis??

Growing up I was pretty straight-laced. I didn’t break the rules or push my limits. Even after my mother passed away I didn’t rebel against my father. I was a curious kid but I was not necessarily adventurous.

In high school, when all my friends were experimenting with different things I didn’t join in. I was a boring teenager.

College was the time for me to break loose, go overboard and do all the things I never tried growing up. Yeah right. I barely drank alcohol and didn’t experiment with drugs. I didn’t party but spent most of my time studying or watching serials. In short, I was an even more uninteresting young adult.

I planned out my life. After I finished my undergraduate degree I would take a year off and gain some more vet-med experience. I would complete my DVM degree, finish my residency and start specializing. I thought I would be in school for most of my 20s and I was okay with that. I kept my nose to the grindstone and rarely lost the path I was on.

I was extraordinarily mundane.

I hoped one day I would hear the call of the wild but it just wasn’t in my nature. I frequently wished that one day I could be more spontaneous and stop preparing for every eventuality. I hoped that one day I could live life as it hit me.

Well, I got my wish. Just not in the way I expected.

I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis in my early 20s and every day since has been a surprise. I live by the hour, not by the decade because I don't know what new obstacles each day will bring. I wake up every morning wondering what I am capable of and usually, it never goes to plan.

Before my RA, I wanted to get through my education so I could set myself up financially and start my adult life. I thought I could do everything I enjoyed after I retired. Now, I have no idea what my body will be like by the time I’m 60 so I should probably enjoy my life right now.

Before my RA I planned my life to the letter.

I made lists and tasks and checked them off as I went. I was also a massive procrastinator so a lot of my tasks were pushed to the last minute. Now I find myself jumping on tasks sooner because I don’t know how I'll feel later. I also don’t plan out nearly as much as I used to. I make a rough outline of my day not really to follow it but as a reminder of major events because my memory is shot to pieces.

Rheumatoid Arthritis is a difficult disease. There are so many things that make me angry and sad. I gave up a lot because of my new limitations. But, frequently, I admit it has made my life better in some ways: I take more risks, I don’t dwell on things as much and life is for living not just planning!

By providing your email address, you are agreeing to our privacy policy.

More on this topic

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The RheumatoidArthritis.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Join the conversation

or create an account to comment.

Community Poll

How does your pet support your RA journey?