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“How are the aches and pains?”


This is not “how are you feeling?” this is “how are you feeling, in your own head?”

I have touched on people’s “suspended belief” before in the first series, and it still holds true. More often than not, people do not want to delve any deeper than words. The cannot help but think most of this disease is me. On the surface, they care but without the action. They look like good people without working to back it up.


Then there is my “inner demons” theory. How much of this is in my head? If people cannot see me struggling maybe I am giving this disease more influence and in turn it is making me worse. Instead of thinking I wonder what I can achieve today I think I will achieve everything; I can beat the RA.

Unfortuantely, as anyone with an autoimmune knows, this is not how it works, as much as we wished it is true. Thoughts have a power over us but not so much so as to change an entire disease.

Over the last few months, I realized being ill is the best way to see who my true friends are. Never once did a good friend ask me “how are the aches and pains?” They see when I struggle and they help. They express concern, they check in. They are aware.

People who ask “how are the aches and pains?” rely on words. They appear considerate while fueling their own suspended belief in me.


Hi, my name is Monica and I have RA.