At nineteen, I’ve learned a lot about life. I’ve learned that life is short – that making the most of each day is crucial. I’ve learned that happiness is a choice, it’s a choice that I make most days despite living with an autoimmune disease.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with Lupus, it can cause problems of the skin, heart, lungs, kidneys, joints and nervous system. Symptoms of the disease are very painful and when active, are known as a flare up. Unfortunately, it’s a disease that you will always have.
My lupus has forced me to slow down – to put my health first. I schedule my weeks in advance and always plan for “restful” days. There are times I have to remind myself I’m not superwoman, I can’t do everything. I’ve learned how to have balance in my life even if that means saying no to going out. I measure a lot of my life in teaspoons. Thankfully, I have a great support system who care for me and my well-being.
My life at nineteen looks a lot different than I thought it would a couple years ago. Although it’s filled with adventure and joy, it’s also filled with some real-life big girl struggles. I was diagnosed with Lupus at eighteen, not knowing what the disease meant or how to manage it. Since then, I’ve accepted it and now look at my life with fresh eyes.
Life truly is what you make it – and I choose to look at my Lupus in a way that teaches me that this life really is a gift from God. I believe everything happens for a reason, in his timing. I do think I’m meant to have this disease so that I can share my struggle in hopes to help one of my readers possibly battling the same autoimmune disease. I encourage you to look at life today with fresh eyes – what will you do to make today count?
A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
My son, pay attention to what I say; turn your ear to my words.
Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart;
For they are life to those who find them and health to one’s whole body.