Walker Spotlight - Jada
In the words of Jada Draffin…
Lupus journeys are different for many people. Personally, my journey has been full of ups and downs. I was first diagnosed in early 2019. It started at the dermatologist. I was getting a lot of skin infections and rashes that no one could diagnose. My dermatologist referred me to get my blood drawn which led me to see my very first Rheumatologist. Shortly after an abundance of tests, I was finally diagnosed with lupus along with two other autoimmune disorders. Within the past couple of years I needed to remind myself of my body’s strength and abilities, even on my darkest days. I’ve learned, even the smallest spark of strength can lighten up the darkest moments and to never underestimate my own strength. I am trying to kick lupus’ butt one day at a time.
I first wanted to get involved with Walk to End Lupus Now to surround myself with people who understand the everyday struggles of living with lupus. When I found out about my diagnosis I felt many emotions - many of them being confused, loneliness and being clueless. Before getting involved at my first walk in NYC in 2019, I didn’t know anyone with lupus.
My first walk will always be near and dear to my heart. I was able to connect with so many resources and individuals that I will always cherish. During the Hudson Valley Walk in 2019 I was able to bring my family and friends along on my lupus journey and build “JD’s Wolf Pack”. I’ve met other lupus warriors, families, friends and volunteers all fighting to make a change in the course of lupus awareness. Although this year's walk is virtual, I wanted to shake things up. My plan for his year's walk is to have my closest friends and family at a nearby park raising awareness and donations while abiding by the COVID restrictions on October 16th!
2020 was a very hard year and being able to come together as a small group physically makes all the difference.