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!
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