Tatjana B. - Diagnosed at age 16
In January I had a bad flu and went to the emergency room. They put me on an antibiotic, which didn’t help too much. Every time I was in school I felt tired, which wasn’t normal for me because I’m a very energetic person. I’m always playing with my two little precious nieces and don't sleep during the day.
I remember I was only 16 years old in 10th grade when everything was going so well, but then one night as I was getting ready for bed, I got really hot and started coughing, I thought it was the flu but it felt like a dream. When I turned the lights on I saw a lot of blood on my bed sheets and on my clothes. I was throwing up blood, and it was very difficult to see and especially hard when I called for my mom and brother. It was 2 in the morning and my brother picked me up and rushed me to the hospital. When they put me in the ICU, I was intubated and had a kidney biopsy done and was diagnosed with lupus.
I was hospitalized for 2 months and discharged to go home, and when I did I was so happy to see everyone. I stayed home for a few weeks and then went to school, soon after I noticed my chest was hurting and as I got home, I had trouble breathing, and my lips turned a different color. Everything happened again, so I was hospitalized for the second time for 20 more days. It was so scary. I hated seeing all my family and friends in shock. I was really super close to dying, basically it was life or death for me. Now I’m healthy, and doing so much better.