I understand exactly what he's talking about.
I sometimes find myself getting really pissed off about having been pissed on.
The interesting thing about my anger is that it's never low-grade, like my chronic fatigue. Instead, it's like a hot flash: it comes on suddenly, tempers over time, and then leaves me sweaty and trembling.
It's like the anger I might feel right after taking a punch; it certainly puts me in a great position to render a counter-punch. But the problem is, there's nobody and nothing that I can counter-punch -- at least, not without causing some serious damage to myself or to my relationships.
And I happen to think that's one of the "extra-articular" diseases associated with RA. I mean, sure, we can get the "regular old" extra-articular manifestations of RA, like, say, vasculitis, pleurisy, neuropathy, and so forth. But why hasn't anyone ever added "rage" to that list?
William Wordsworth, in his Lyrical Ballads, wrote of "emotion that is recollected in tranquility." He was talking, of course, about the distance necessary between the experience of an event and the reasonable attempt to interpret it.
The problem with RA is that we are never able to gain the distance necessary to interpret the experience of having RA -- because we experience it over and over and over again. It's almost like we awaken every day, receive a new diagnosis of RA, and have to struggle to deal with it.
I've said it before, but I'll say it again: RA sucks ass.