Letter to My PsA Neighbor

Letter to My PsA Neighbor

My psoriatic arthritis is like an awful neighbor you just can’t shake – sometimes loud, sometimes nagging, sometimes judging, sometimes overbearing, rarely quiet.

Here’s my letter to this neighbor who just won’t give our family a break.

Dear Psoriatic Arthritis…

We’ve lived side by side for the past 15 years, and you’ve been a thorn in my side since day one. Your house is painted black, drapes closed, and you’re always seen on the sidewalks with a scowl on your face. You are determined to make us just as grumpy as you.

You started out by bringing pain to my son at the young age of 5. You would yell at him to stay off the grass, telling him he was laughing too loud and having too much fun. Every time you saw him, you’d clamor he wasn’t strong enough to play tag with his friends or ride his bike to the ice cream stand.

Have you no shame?

He tried hard to ignore you, and most times, he could drown out your little voice in his head by his determination to just be a kid. He was more resilient than you anticipated.

But when he couldn’t shake your negativity, he tried to reason with you by taking medications that had such horrible side effects. He had to give up his weekends for more than a year because he would be sick to his stomach for days. He just wanted you to be happy and sacrificed a lot.

Twelve years ago you began attacking me, too. You would pop over unannounced and expect to be invited to dinner. At that time, you were more or less annoying. I could peek through the window shade and see it was you who rang the doorbell. We’d hide and pretend we weren’t home until you left, and it worked for a few years.

Then, just when I was going through a difficult time and all stressed out, you chose that moment to amp up your attacks on me. You decided to camp out on our porch, always looming, never leaving. You called constantly for no reason at all. You would send nasty letters with messages of “You can’t escape me,” “I’ll never give up,” and “I will win.”

Give us a break

With both my son and I feeling your grip, we believed you’d never move out of the neighborhood. We thought we’d be stuck with your attacks forever. That is until we found hope.

We found strength in our psoriatic arthritis community, making friends in person and on social media. Guess what? To our surprise, they have bad neighbors, too. Talking with them has changed my outlook and has given me strength to fight back.

I went back to the police (my rheumatologist). While he can’t guarantee you’ll ever move out, he did give me new techniques to live a more quiet life with you next door. I now am on medication that lets me live a pretty good life. I exercise correctly, and rest when I need to. You haven’t popped over unannounced in more than a year.

Oh, and that little kid you wanted so desperately to keep down? He’s now an adult and doing pretty well, too. I’d watch out for that one. He has some pretty sneaky ideas of his own.

I know you’ll always be with us, but at least your voice will be a whisper. We will look the other way when we see you on the sidewalk. We know you could amp up your presence at any time, but we’ll be prepared. Lots of people have our backs.

So, please, just give us a break. Stay in your corner of the sub. It will be better for everyone.

Sincerely,

Jaime, your nice neighbor

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

Comments

View Comments (6)
  • Lizette
    9 months ago

    Your story is inspiring. It spoke to the realities of the disease yet gives hope. Blessings

  • Jaime Lyn Moy author
    9 months ago

    Thank you so much! Blessings to you, too!

  • mich54
    9 months ago

    Very creative.

  • Jaime Lyn Moy author
    9 months ago

    Do you have a nickname for your psoriatic arthritis? I’ve heard some refer to it as “Arthur”. Wishing you all the best in health and happiness!

  • imschmarte
    11 months ago

    I love the metaphor of PsA being the horrible neighbor you can’t shake!! Sometimes it feels that way. Thanks for posting, and good luck to you and your son!

  • Jaime Lyn Moy author
    9 months ago

    Thank you! And same to you!

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