Katie A. - Diagnosed Age 17
I’ve gotten several blood tests. Doctors told me what they thought I have but really had no answer. I’ve been told that I just had loose joints and polycystic ovarian syndrome. Now that one doctor noticed a few things, they had me tested for lupus. I’ve never heard of lupus before. When the test results came back positive I looked up what lupus was.
I was scared. I am scared. I am an athlete. I work out six days a week and just tried to ignore the pain. I’ve always gotten really bad headaches all the time. My muscles and joints always hurt. The physical therapist told me that he couldn’t help, the only thing wrong with me is not having muscle around the joint. That couldn’t be it because I’ve been working on that for four years. I play volleyball and track. Now that I know I have lupus I can set a workout that will most benefit me.
I’m 17, a junior in high school about to go into track season. I never used to know why I was tired all the time. I do not get a lot of sleep because my body hurts so bad that I can’t sleep. What gives me hope is that I want to be the best me. I never knew I had this disease and wasn’t scared of an outcome. Some of the hardships is that people do not understand, yet think they do. They say they understand how much pain I am always in and it isn’t bad. They don’t really know though. They don’t know the daily struggle I go through just to make it through each and every day, mentally and physically. My symptoms aren’t the worst compared to others. I’ve never been hospitalized, but I do, and did, have to take a lot of medicine. I don’t feel normal. I don’t feel like any other teenager. The one thing that gets me through is that it could have been worse and that I am meant for bigger and better things. School doesn’t come easy. I’ve had to work very hard. I’m taking college classes and have a 3.8 GPA on top of homework and practices.