Crowd of unhappy people with one woman shining brightly looking happy

Don’t Worry, Be Happy

I had the honor of attending a health conference last week. It was very powerful. I met old and new friends. One of the ladies I met last year asked me, why am I always so happy?  We have actually become close friends over this past year. I told her that I admire people who seem to be happy anyway, even if they're not.

Striving to be happy

I try to be happy all the time. My father is 85 years old and his line to me every day is, “I’m blessed to see another day; thanks for waking me up this morning." He has been saying these words since I can remember. I live by this same slogan. Yes, I have health issues, but so do a lot of other people. I can choose to be mad at the world or I can be happy and see all the good I have in this life. We don’t have any do-overs on this earth, so we need to get it right the first time.

There are so many different types of people in this world, some are always happy, and some people wake up every morning with a chip on their shoulder. I wake up happy despite the pain. The first words out of my mouth every morning before my feet hit the ground is, “thank you God for another day.”

Some days are harder than others to be happy

I have so much to be happy for; a great husband, wonderful children, and awesome grandkids. I was dealt a bad hand with psoriasis since age 5, psoriatic arthritis at age 25 and fibromyalgia at age 60. But life goes on.

Of course, I’m not happy 365 days of the year; my body just wouldn’t allow it. I lost a beautiful baby girl at the age of 9 months old. This was the worst pain of my life, but I did move past that pain. Am I going to let psoriatic arthritis bring down; no, I’m not?

Finding happiness even through the pain

There is so much mental and physical pain in life and so many people I want to help. I try not to focus on what my body is going through and trust me it’s a lot. There are some days I feel like walking death, but I know life is way bigger than me and my issues.

There are so many of us that are in continual pain that gets us down. We are crippled with mental and emotional problems. I do understand. There are many days I just want to give up and scream I can’t take this anymore. We can be happy with our illnesses. I have suffered a lot because of my diseases, but I try and find happiness when I can.

The journey to happiness is a long one

It took me 61 years to get here, so I don’t expect you to get up tomorrow and start dancing. I had to remember that my body was sick, but I had a good brain to think with. I give myself permission to smile when I’m in pain. Try to figure out which ones are physical pain and which ones are emotional ones.

I honestly believe in my heart that we all have choices of how we feel. What’s yours? Think about how you can use your health to benefit others. You can start a support group or blog. You are your own best advocate, be seen in your community. I try to encourage others by telling them they are not alone. Every year I go to Capitol Hill to speak about my disease, so why don’t you come join me? It will put a smile on your face.

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