Sharing the Journey
People like you reach out to us regularly wanting to share their story.
Their reasons vary – they want to help others; they want to ease suffering; they want to be heard; they want to connect with others like them.
Above all, they want the biggest lessons that they have learned in life to have greater meaning. This is where you come in.
Our new series – Sharing the Journey – is by you and for you. Through this series of articles intended to educate and inform, we will also highlight the perspectives and personal experiences of people who struggle with lupus each day.
Mostly, we will celebrate what makes the lupus community strong by sharing our journey, together.
Not only are our stories connected by lupus, but our stories are also connected by hope, inspiration, and determination to live a life that is not defined by lupus.
We have more in common than we know. We invite you to expect the unexpected by experiencing the journey, together.
“I want to share my story with the world because some of my most fervent conversations have started with the topic of lupus. Lately, there has been something special that overcomes the conversation when I engage in a topic as powerful as lupus. The conversation suddenly turns something that is so detrimental and not easy to talk about, into something full of hopefulness and optimism. So to share that something special with others through heartfelt conversations and topic discussions, I feel like I can change a life for the good, like mine has been changed over recent years.” –Nikki Waitt, age 23
“I want to share my story because as a child growing up with lupus I did not know about the disease and my parents and family did not know much about it and that unknown was scary for a long time. Since my diagnosis, I have been able to accomplish my dreams although it wasn't always easy.” --Kylie Katz, age 16
"Having lupus has made me the person I am today, and growing up it was embarrassing to admit that I had it and most people didn't or still don't understand what lupus is so I get to explain it. But I was happy to be diagnosed at age 12 and at least know what is going on with me, after spending three years waiting on a diagnosis. Some people get diagnosed with a disease and they have no clue how to treat it and they don’t beat their disease. I was lucky enough to not only find out what I had, but I also have a close support system that helped me through the tough times, and doctors who were determined to diagnose and treat me. I may not have beat lupus but lupus didn’t beat me and I want to prove to anyone out there that even though I have lupus I am still doing what I want to do, and living my life the way I want to live it. Sure there are hard days where I feel like giving up but I can't let my illness dictate who I am and what I can and can't do. I only have one life and I am going to live it to the fullest." –Michelle Piper, age 25
“I want to share my story because when I tell people I have lupus they say that I don’t look sick. Not all illnesses are visible. I also want people who have lupus to understand that their life isn't over, that they need to have hope and know they're not alone in the fight.” –Amy Clayton, age 29
“I want to share my story because I have pushed the limits with lupus. I want to be a voice to younger people with lupus so that they know they can continue to be successful. In May I graduated with my Masters in Public Administration, and I start law school in two weeks. My dreams did not stop because I was diagnosed with lupus. I've had to learn to listen to my body, treat my body well by maintaining a healthy lifestyle and positive attitude. Being diagnosed with a chronic illness can be rather depressing, but I'm here to let you know that YOU CAN STILL DO ANYTHING!” – Kayla Britt, age 25
“I want to share my story to provide hope, encouragement, and inspiration. I believe lupus must be managed, but you can find ways to do what you love despite this disease. I want to encourage others by sharing my journey with lupus. I especially want to encourage teenagers who were diagnosed as young as me – age 16 at diagnosis – to not allow their life to be defined by this disease.” – Becca Mighell, age 19
“I want to share my story to raise awareness for lupus and help others advocate for their health based on my own personal experiences.” – Madison Palmer, age 23