In this special poem written specifically for World Arthritis Day 2021, I try to share some insight on what it’s like to live with Arthritis and the ‘unseen’ side that only those who suffer know.
When remission builds you up
For a flare to cut you down.
When everyone around you
Cannot discern your yesterday to now.
When the strength to say ‘I can’t’
Is lost in someone else’s pain.
So we tell the world we’re fine
Carry the agony in place of shame.
When a consultant doesn’t understand
Or ask the reasons why –
It is more than test results and X-rays
And pain – why we cry.
When the fear of tomorrow
And grieving of yesterday
Steal us from this moment
Replacing memories of today.
When the guilt eats away
At any confidence you have left.
The weight of burden you now carry
Suffocates upon your aching chest.
When faced with an impossible choice
With the energy that remains.
To be a parent, present, or lay
In a body that wraps your mind in chains.
When the burning gets too much
And you’re ready to tap out.
Remember you’re not alone, please –
As in this desert of ignorance
There is a community, despite the drought.