Entry in My Diary Living With Psoriatic Arthritis and Psoriasis
Morning fatigue and flare prevention
7:00 AM - I just woke up at my normal time. However, I feel somewhat stiffer this morning than usual. I am assessing whether my day today is better than yesterday. Am I more stressed? I feel very fatigued. As far as I can recall there wasn’t anything unusual about my night of sleep. I know today will be a busy day for me. I have a full schedule ahead of me. I will work my normal shift hours and hope I have some extra time to run errands.
8:00 AM - I can do this!!!! Let’s get the day started. Please, no brain fog today. Why did I come in this room? I don’t have a clue. I had come downstairs and had been down there for about a little while. Oh, now I remember I need to send in my morning report to my boss.
9:00 AM – Flare-up today - Fingers are unusually stiff as I try to open the lid of my preserves for my bagel. It makes me so upset to twist and twist and realize it will not open. Frustrated, my brain fog just kicked in and I can't remember if I sent the report yet. Shoulders feel very heavy on this morning. Just take a pain pill already.
10:00 AM - Removing Stressors Today - I purposely will document everything that might attempt to stress me today. It will start with telephone calls that I don’t think is a priority. When my psoriatic arthritis flares, taking on others problems can be a huge stress factor in my life. I know I try to fix the world and when I find myself overdoing it, my body tells on me. I’m lucky if I can make it upstairs. To best describe it I would say it feels like someone has dropped a load of boxes on me and I must remove that feeling.
11:00 AM - Type of pain - If I was to rate my pain on today I would document it at a 6; which is a high pain day. It really depends on today what I choose today that will lessen this pain or intensify it. I will be very cautious to not bring it to another level. I will not complain about things or be the worry wart that so many often find themselves in when they are in discomfort. I will pull out my smiley face to remind me of those things that I am grateful of.
Lunch time decisions and medication side effects
12:00 Noon - It is finally noon and lunchtime. As a PsA patient, today I’m having a nutritious, but yummy lunch. For the benefit of my health, I sometimes walk on my lunch hour. Today will not be one of those days where I will be counting steps. When I’m having a flare going on, I don’t even attempt to make too many steps. Some days it’s great to get out and exercise. It is another part of leaving stress behind. Normally I sit down and enjoy my lunch and maybe relax and prepare for the remaining hours I have left for the day. I was working as I normally do and out of nowhere, I began feeling very dizzy. Probably side effects from the pain pill.
2:00 PM - I can’t find time to finish my reports today. Every time a thought gets in my head; I lose it. I really need to take notes. I have worked very hard all day long. It’s taking longer to finish than I expected. I need to set up a realistic time frame for this. I am extremely nervous because of not being able to finish this.
Reflections on the day
5:00 PM - Closing Documentation - I can truly say today has been okay. I’ve had many other days that have been more stressful. When I go I've back to the many entries of my journal, I realize that I am dealing with this disease and documenting is my way of saying, look at how I was doing on December 4, 2018. It wasn’t all that bad.
I’ve had several entries where I pulled the covers of my bed back and just decide to remain in the bed all day; but today was not that day.
We know there is no existing cure for psoriasis, but treatments can help. Try to understand your triggers. It will help to avoid flare-ups. Talk to your doctor about treatment options that are best for you.
How often do you experience brain fog?