When you hear the word remission with regard to RA it usually does not mean that the disease is entirely gone or "cured" but rather that it is "clinically" quiet as I like to think of it. It just is not shouting at you at the moment. There is a clinical way that Rheumatologists declare that your RA is in remission at any given time that has to do with protocols that include how long you are stiff in the AM, how much pain, swelling, etc. exists, and so on but I am not going to get that technical here. Suffice it to say that although I have been in mild remission many times it never seems to last and that is one of the biggest psychological challenges I face. Each time I am doing really well, I almost believe that the RA is gone for good! Only to have a knee or a hip or a shoulder or all three become stiff and painful again. I have learned to roll with that but without a doubt it still remains one of the biggest emotional hurdles I deal with.
Finally, I had to come to terms with taking medications, lots of medications and I really hated that. Very tough. Having never had anything more than an occasional flu, I was not a person that liked pills, let alone some of the other fun things I now have to take. And there are a bevy of potential side effects, that frankly, are pretty scary to see in a list of potential side effects. But the alternative was a life of pain, disability, and a significantly shorter life span than what you already are going to have thanks to the RA so I sucked it up and said OK lets examine the options and go from there....and so I did.