I can't say that I understand the pain of arthritis, but I can say I have lived through it. My sister is 35 and was BORN with RA. She has two artificial knees and an artificial hip. She is married with two children (7 and 4). She went to college right out of high school and received her degree in Occupational Therapy. She doesn't work now because of the kids and it's hard on her body. She just went to the doc last week and asked for cortizone in her ankle. She lives with pain every day. She just accepts it and enjoys the life she has to the fullest.
I will tell you one thing I have learned from her, LIFE IS WHAT YOU MAKE OF IT!!! I learned a whole lot about life last year. Had someone dearly to me die of cancer (way too young), my husband had a stroke at 32, blah blah blah. But the most important thing is that we are okay and we are alive. We live each day to the fullest.
I understand the "getting older" thing completely. Last year I was diagnosed with a thyroid problem (I'm 33). I'm now on pills the rest of my life. So is my huband, he's on cumadin for the stoke. Getting older scares me too. I all of a sudden feel like we are falling apart. But I put that aside and take every day as a new beginning.
You will be fine and life will be great. Getting old is really a good thing. At least we wake up every day which beats the alternative. Too young for that.