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Am I More Than Just My PsA?

Psoriatic arthritis has so much, probably too much, control over my life. Most days, it dictates what I can and cannot do. Psoriatic arthritis makes my schedule, affects my income, my relationships, and even my self-worth. But is my psoriatic arthritis all that I am?

It is hard to remember that I am more

Many days it feels like that is really the case. It feels like who I am, and everything that entails is made up entirely of my psoriatic arthritis. I hate that I feel that way about it. I hate that it takes over so much of who I am and what I do. It’s hard to remember that there is so much more to who I am than the fact that I have psoriatic arthritis.

I’m a friend

Yes, because of my PsA, I’m not nearly the type of friend that I want to be. But that part of me, the one that is a friend to others, is so much more than my PsA. How I treat others, the way I care about my friends and how they know, despite my PsA, that I will always do anything I can to help them, support them, and be the best friend that I can possibly be. Being a good friend is worth so much more.

I’m a mom

I love my children more than anything in this world. And while I try my best to keep the daily struggles of life with PsA from touching them, I’ve finally come to accept that I can’t. I can do my best to be the best I can be for them. But if I’m being honest, I have to admit that there are days when I am not good enough. Because of PsA, I’m not strong enough to be the mom that I want to be, the one my children deserve. But being a mom is a much larger, much stronger part of who I am than my psoriatic arthritis. Being a good mom is so much more.

I’m just me

Coming to accept that my psoriatic arthritis is such a large part of me has been a long and challenging journey. The simple fact of the matter is that while I have to take about a million medications, watch every single thing I put into my mouth, and pay attention to all the signals my body sends me, it is who and what I am. But it is not ALL that I am. I am so much more.

I am so much more

I still have so much to offer that isn’t part of my psoriatic arthritis. Or maybe, what I DO have to offer, the hope, strength, and encouragement for others is because of the psoriatic arthritis and not necessarily in spite of it? I don’t know. But what I do know is that since my PsA, I am stronger than I ever thought I could be. I am more disciplined than I ever have been. I understand and empathize when others are in pain so much more deeply.

Better because, not in spite of

So maybe it is not that I am more than my PsA. Maybe it is that I am actually a better person BECAUSE of psoriatic arthritis. Would I give anything not to have it? Of course. But since I do, I can use it to make myself the best person I can be because when I comes down to it, I am capable of being so much more than just my psoriatic arthritis.

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