An older woman lays exhausted on a patterned rug surrounded by children's toys

Finding and Keeping Joy While Living With Psoriatic Arthritis

Living with psoriatic arthritis is hard. For most of us, it means living in pain every day or almost every day. Everyone is different and for me, I experience daily pain, especially if I am being active.

Family first

I take care of my family. That means I am helping with whatever they need or I am babysitting my grandchildren. Taking care of my grandchildren when I am in pain is such a challenge. However, I would never let that pain stop me from being there for them.

No matter what needs to be done, I am always there. I would not have it any other way. I will not let the pain stop me. So how do I find joy when pain is the dominating factor in my day? It's not always easy but I promise it can be done.

Let the music heal your soul

For me, music has always been my go-to solution. No matter how I am feeling, I can hear music and it automatically lifts my soul. I can get lost in the music and forget the pain. I'm sure you have heard the expression "mind over matter". The matter: psoriatic arthritis and pain.

That might sound crazy to some but I keep a playlist of songs that brings me joy when I hear them. Part of the pain comes from the body being tense. When I listen to music, it relaxes me and the tension becomes less.

It helps to ease the pain even if it is just five minutes. Any relief from pain is a joy don't you agree?

Videos consumed with love

I mentioned my grandchildren. I have two - a boy and a girl. I have countless videos of them on my phone doing funny things. When the pain gets so overwhelming, I go to those videos because they bring me joy and make me smile. It always serves as the perfect distraction no matter how bad the pain is.

They are my world. Because of them and my other family, I will keep pushing even when the psoriatic arthritis tries to tell me I can't.

I never want them thinking they are less important to me because the PsA pain is weighing me down.

Find your own version of joy

I am not going to tell you it is always easy, because it's not. I do believe we have a choice to make mentally. We can let the pain overwhelm us or we can choose to find joy in the midst of the situation.

If you don't have that joy I implore you to find things that bring you joy. When you do then you can go back to whatever it is and look or listen to it to help you start to feel that joy again.

Anything that helps you deal with this tough disease is a positive thing. Joy should be something we have every single day of our life. If we have to live with daily pain as a result of psoriatic arthritis, we should live with joy too.

This or That

When something is bothering you, what do you tend to do?

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