September 25, 2019
Since being diagnosed with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus back in 2017, my world has turned upside down. The physical toll on my body has been incredibly damaging, but what I think is more important to talk about here is the mental and emotional toll that everyone affected by this disease goes through. I believe it is just as, if not more important to understand how receiving the devastating diagnosis of Lupus can create turmoil in our minds, our hearts and our souls.
Lupus is such a daunting and unpredictable disease, it is almost impossible to live your day to day life without anxiety, depression and fear of what’s to come. Lupus warriors are not only dealing with daily attacks on their bodies, but on their sanity as well. New medications can alter our mood and behavior, which doesn’t make adjusting to our new normal any easier.
I think it’s important that we let ourselves grieve the loss of who we were before this disease but not let that grief take over forever. Every once in a while, I have to let myself scream, kick, cry and wail about how unfair my situation is. It honestly makes me feel better. Some days I have to lay in bed and just feel sorry for myself and I’m okay with that – as long as I don’t stay in that dark place forever. It’s healthy to be realistic and let yourself cry it out, as long as tomorrow you try again to have a better day.
Hope is THE driving force that can pull me out of the darkness when I’m having a particular challenging day, week or month. Lupus Research Alliance is what provides that hope. Without research, nothing is going to change or improve. When I’m feeling helpless, I always log on and read about all of the work the wonderful people at Lupus Research Alliance are doing for me and all of my fellow Lupus warriors and it gives me the strength to keep going. Knowing that I have such a strong support system in my corner, working around the clock in order to make my life better is a wonderful feeling. I am humbled and honored to be recognized by this incredible organization.
By Mandy Moore
29-Year Old Flight Attendant