Sequence of burned matches representing the cycle of psoriatic arthritis flare-ups

This Too Shall Pass: A Mantra To Survive Your Worst Days

Dealing with excruciating pain is not new for chronic illness sufferers. In fact, coping with it is already a part of our daily routine. Worse, most of us pray to experience even just one pain-free day.

Navigating the worst days with psoriatic arthritis

Sometimes, I wonder if my medications are even working or if I am just getting used to being in pain all the time. Undeniably, there are days where I ask myself if this pain will go away or when this flare-up will end.

Let me tell you about the universal law of impermanence. It is a Buddhist concept that believes that nothing in this world is fixed and permanent. Basically, it declares that all relationships will end via death or separation. In summary, it embodies the famous quote “This too, shall pass”.

Slowly healing just by going through it

When I am in severe pain or when I think that my chronic illness is getting the best of me, this doctrine is an effective reminder that nothing is meant to last forever.

All things must pass, the migraine, joint pain, swelling, even the plaques, patches, and all the suffering. One day, you can finally look at the mirror with confidence, regardless of whether or not your patches are still there.

The beauty of having this as a daily mantra is that it makes you look forward to the future. It makes you hopeful that your toughest days will be over soon, and that there are better days ahead of you. It convinces you that healing is possible and that you are, in fact, slowly healing just by going through it.

All good things must pass, too.

Being aware of the impermanence of all situations makes you realize that you should not take life for granted because beautiful things won’t last forever, too. You have to treat each day as a blessing and savor every precious moment because chances are, you will no longer get them back.

Through this doctrine, we are reminded that not only things but relationships are impermanent as well. We get to realize what matters most, and that is the people we can’t imagine living the rest of our lives without.

What you do have is today

As chronic illness sufferers, we should take refuge in the thought that everything will soon pass. If you're currently in your worst flare-up yet, I encourage you to take each day as it comes and know that you owe it to yourself to take as much time as you need to heal.

At the end of the day, the choice is entirely up to you. You can either wallow in self-pity because you are chronically ill or create beautiful moments with your loved ones and make each day count. You can either grieve for what you’ve lost when you got sick or choose to keep moving forward instead.

May you find peace knowing that although you may not have forever, you can embrace what you have now.

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