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Joys and Pains: A Rheumatoid Arthritis Poem – by Ashley Boynes-Shuck

For today’s blog post, I would like to do something a little different, and share with you all a poem that I wrote about life with rheumatoid arthritis and other rheumatic conditions/chronic illnesses. It is called Joys and Pains. Please enjoy!

“Unrelenting pain and never-ceasing fatigue.

Hurts and aches in every place.

Wondering at times, “why is this? why me?”

But putting on a happy face.

Prone to sickness and infections, too

Difficulty sleeping at night.

Limited on what we can physically do,

Trying hard to see the light.

Living with swelling and joints on fire,

We wonder how this could be real.

But when we get past the negative thinking,

We can rise above it and heal.

Maybe our physical struggles will stay,

And it’s true that there may be no cure.

But if we choose optimism to lead our way,

It will be easier on us, for sure.

Yes sometimes it feels like our bones are all broken

And our heart, sometimes, too.

We have so many internal struggles unspoken

That may, at times leave us blue.

But the support that we get from others like us

Can make this an easier ride.

We can help to lift each other up,

And learn to take our sickness in stride.

Sure at times we feel frustration

For all the things we cannot do.

And there are times we’re in desparation

Because it seems no one else has a clue.

“You don’t look sick!” “You’re too young for arthritis”

Makes this journey even more tough.

But with it all comes a strength deep inside us,

a compassion for when times get rough.

“I have arthritis, it doesn’t have me!”

We need to learn to make do with what we’ve gotten.

There will be tears and struggles and adversity

And we may even at times feel forgotten.

But the important thing is we rise above.

We do what we can when we can.

By surrounding ourselves with support and with love,

And by accepting it as best as we can.

No one wants to be sick, yes this is true,

And no one would choose this life.

There’s things we give up, and things we can’t do,

and trials, tribulations, and strife.

But realize this – you are still blessed!

Every day you wake up is a gift.

So open it with kindness and try not to stress –

You have a life – so LIVE!”

I hope you enjoyed this! I have been in a bad flare, dealing with a lot of pain, but trying to rise above it and stay strong! Writing has been an outlet for me, and I decided today to jot down a poem. I hope that my fellow “spoonies” and “rheum mates” can relate. Enjoy — and if any of you write, we’d love for you to share your stories or poetry! Leave a comment! Have a great weekend.

Stay well,

Ashley Boynes-Shuck

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7 thoughts on “Joys and Pains: A Rheumatoid Arthritis Poem – by Ashley Boynes-Shuck

  1. Ashley, You are doing everything that I want to do. My passion is in writing. I, too, express myself in poetry. It has always been an outlet for me. Now that I’m retiring, I have decided to take the opportunity to devote to my passions. Lately, it seems I can’t connect with my passion due to my health. Thank you for expressing what I just can’t seem to bring to fruition. I’ve been telling myself & others that it’s time for me to take the bull by the horns yet I don’t seem to have gained any sense of control. You are truly a blessing to me, Ashley. Thank God for people like you. You serve such an important purpose in life. I value the role you play in my life. I know that the connection is an online one. However, most of my connections in life are this way now. I can honestly say that you are a lifeline for me at this moment in time. I’m finding inspiration as well as wisdom, caring, understanding & a feeling that I shouldn’t give up. It’s been rough for awhile. My light has been dimming. Thank you for bringing some light back into my life. You have expressed my feelings in your work. You have a way of connecting with others because you are honest & real. Despite the pain, the relentless fatigue & a whole host of other symptoms & illnesses, you continue to keep pressing forward. What a beautiful, well expressed poem, Ashley. Thank you.

  2. Thank you Ashley!! I am suffering through a bit of depression, due to impending job loss within next month, and inability to find another. your prose is great comfort, and hit home. My RA is not so bad lately except for the darn fatigue, hope your flare (s) are subsiding, you brought me a smile 🙂

  3. This is a poem I wrote a few days ago. I have been crying a lot lately and writing is my outlet as well. I’m only 26 and really struggling.

    Let her be, she’d rather be sleeping..
    Her dreams are far more lovely than her conscious, silent weeping..
    But when she wakes, she’s reminded too quickly, of the prison she’s living in..
    Her own body, how could that be?
    It’s turned against her and is the cause of her suffering, but no one can tell on the outside.
    She must be bluffing..
    When she was a little girl, her first sentence was “Me do.”
    Perhaps her pride was not something she’d choose.
    But give her credit where credit is due.
    She’s been masking this pain for years…
    But recently the swelling has been more painful than the tears.
    But she’s not giving up, no, she’s still much too proud for that.
    She’s just desperately searching for something to get her back on track.
    She opens her eyes and begins the day the same as the last…..
    With a single tear for who she was in her past.

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