Giving Lupus a Face

Dedicated to a friend in pain, with hope, because of love…

This is Taylor. She’s a cute, smart, adventuresome and adorable 7-year-old. She loves arts & crafts, basketball, gymnastics and cheerleading, singing songs that don’t make sense and her mother. Taylor’s mother loves her about as much a mother can love a child and has spared no expense or energy in showing her how much so, though energy is at a premium at time for, because she has lupus. Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that damages various parts of the body, especially the skin, joints, blood and kidneys with symptoms that last from days to weeks to years.
It’s estimated that nearly two million Americans are living with lupus and dealing with a disease that creates autoantibodies that destroy healthy tissue, causing inflammation, pain, damage and generally making life unbearable at times. It’s these moments over the ten years that I’ve known Taylor’s mom that I’ve felt a fraction of her pain, but recognized her strength as she’s pushed through it all and carried Taylor to term amongst flares, excruciating pain and remissions. Every day is a test in managing the recurring symptoms, taking a handful of meds, suffering from chronic migraines, neuropathy and pleurisy, yet wearing a smile for her little girl.

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