Silver Linings

By Laura Genoves

I’m someone living with rheumatoid arthritis in Washington State, one of the first areas where COVID-19 was being diagnosed and spreading. My immunosuppressive drugs make me, and people like me, less able to fight off infections like this novel coronavirus. As a result, I decided early-on to self-quarantine to protect myself during this public health outbreak.

For me, time at home has helped take a bit of the day-to-day pressure off. Typically, I shuffle my busy self to work, volunteer and maintain personal and family commitments; but those appointments quickly evaporated with the spread of coronavirus in my area.

There certainly is a time and place for binge watching, and I do love a great series. But I didn’t want to miss out on the opportunity to do things at home that are chronically at the bottom of my to-do list. My quarantine has become a time of possibilities: to explore or revisit activities I somehow haven’t had time for before this true “staycation.” With my extra time at home, I have committed to exploring new hobbies. So far, I’ve been learning to knit, working on organizing my photos and baking bread!

This extra time to take care of my home and myself has helped me Live Yes through this time of isolation. The smell of freshly baked bread fills my home with a warm, cozy vibe that harkens back to the time when people actually had time to make it. It’s a comfort that helps me avoid staring at empty store shelves, and I wanted to share it with you!

This joint-friendly recipe from the New York Times uses a few simple ingredients everyone has in their pantry. And it requires very little time to prepare.

It was the perfect crusty-on-the-outside chewy, and on the inside, it complements a steamy bowl of soup. I found joy and satisfaction in making something for my family to enjoy together.

Now, I’d love to “break bread” with you – from afar! I challenge you to try this recipe for yourself. Then connect with me online using the hashtag #WeLiveYes — sharing a picture of your loaf!

If baking isn’t your thing, or you are gluten sensitive, I’d still love to hear about the silver linings you’re experiencing during your social distancing. Share your story and your questions with the Arthritis Foundation through this short survey to help shape future resources and articles!

 Laura is an RA patient living in Washington State who serves on the Arthritis Foundation’s Patient Leadership Council. She’s also a Connect Group facilitator and a Platinum Ambassador.

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