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A Playlist for Grief

Managing PsA

February 27, 2024

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by Jenny Durand


Medically Reviewed by:

Matthew Boland, PhD


by Jenny Durand


Medically Reviewed by:

Matthew Boland, PhD


Music can be so healing. Whether you prefer to dance, just listen, sing, or play an instrument, I hope you’ll invite music into your life in some way, shape, or form.

Music played a big role in helping me navigate the early days of my psoriatic arthritis (PsA) diagnosis.

When I first received my diagnosis, it felt like overnight, I went from being able to run several miles multiple days each week to barely being able to walk. This was especially true when first getting out of bed in the morning.

A lot of the ways I used to define myself (as a runner, an athlete, and an overall active, healthy person) were taken from me. Suddenly, I had no idea who I was or what I was supposed to do.

I spent so much time with grief in those early days. Not only did I lose the body I had always known, but I lost the life plans I had for myself.

At the time, I couldn’t run at all which was something that had previously brought me so much joy. It had even served as a form of therapy for me. Before PsA, I ran a marathon and had plans to run several more.

I was working as a nurse and when PsA came along, and I wasn’t even sure if I would be able to continue to do the work I loved so much. A lot of unknowns were thrown my way in a very short period of time, which I’m sure you can relate to.

The songs I’m sharing with you below are songs that largely center around the topic of grief. They are songs that have helped me through difficult times.

You may want to listen to these songs early on in the grief process (within the first few weeks or month, but not later) since research suggests that continued exposure to stimuli that remind one of their loss can actually intensify and prolong grief.

I once heard a saying, “We all feel the same things, just not always at the same time.”

I think that’s what I love most about music: The fact that someone out there has felt exactly the way I’m feeling, and decided to write a song about it. And somehow I get to listen to it, feel connected to, and held by that person’s words.

If you had just received your diagnosis, are in a particularly bad flare, or life is just a little grief-y at the moment, I hope that some of these songs I’m sharing below can bring you a bit of comfort.

Some of the songs are classics and oldies and some are newer.

I’m thinking of you. Odds are I have been where you are and felt how you feel right now. It does get better, and I hope you can believe me about that. I’ll always be here if you need me.

With love,

Your PsA Guide, Jenny

10 Songs for Grief

  1. Call Your Mom (with Lizzy McAlpine) by Noah Kahan, Lizzy McAlpine
  2. The Scientist by Coldplay
  3. How to Save a Life by The Fray
  4. Blame The Moon by Hazlett
  5. Iris by The Goo Goo Dolls
  6. Slide by The Goo Goo Dolls
  7. Unsteady by X Ambassadors
  8. Superman by Five For Fighting
  9. Ceilings by Lizzy McAlpine
  10. Scared by Jeremy Zucker

You can also follow and listen to this playlist on Spotify.

Medically reviewed on February 27, 2024

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About the author

Jenny Durand

Jenny is a mom, wife, registered nurse (with a background in both oncology and dermatology), writer, and freelance psoriatic arthritis advocate. She has been living with psoriasis since 2012 and psoriatic arthritis (PsA) since 2019. She has a strong passion for helping others by sharing the honest, vulnerable, and not always pretty parts of her own journey with PsA. Her main goal with advocacy work is to help others feel less alone in whatever difficult situations/diagnoses they may be facing. Her PsA diagnosis along with her background in nursing gives her a unique and invaluable perspective of both sides of healthcare. You can find her on Instagram where she keeps you up to date on her life and posts funny and relatable psoriatic arthritis/chronic illness reels and stories.

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