Thirty-One Faces of Hope: Jody Lamb
The lupus community includes people living with lupus, friends, family and supporters across Georgia. For Lupus Awareness Month, we would like to highlight some of our lupus heroes and champions.
In high school, I was known as “the napper”. In college, I was dubbed “the smart, sick girl”. In my career, I was referred to as the “brownie lady who always wears mittens”. I found out I had lupus in 2010, but in retrospect, I have had symptoms of the disease since 1981!
I was officially diagnosed on my youngest daughter’s 20th birthday. I remember the rheumatologist wanting me to stay so he could educate me on this disease, and my thinking, “There’s a party waiting to be had at Olive Garden!”
Lupus has affected my kidneys (Chronic Kidney Disease, Stage 3), my circulation (Reynaud’s), and my joints (Rheumatoid Arthritis), yet I still consider myself to be one of “the lucky ones” as lupus hasn’t taken my life.
The worst part of lupus for me is the relentless fatigue and waves of nausea. I was a special education teacher until 2018—I finally filed for disability when the only thing I could do in a day was teach. My parents, husband, three children, five grandchildren, one dog, and two cats needed me too.
For now, I am learning to prioritize. I’m doing my best to expend my energy on the things in life that matter to me most—faith, family, friends, and soon travel! Every day is a battle, but I feel for the most part I’m winning the war. Please consider a donation to the Lupus Foundation. Lupus affects 1.5 million people in the United States, and the foundation is severely underfunded.
- Jody Lamb