Sleeping with The Enemy: Living with Systemic Lupus Erythematous

I have lupus. It is not something I think about often.  Truth is, it is something I actively work on not thinking about, with the idea being that if I ignore it, it'll go away. To be honest,  I realize that I'm really fooling myself. You can't actually fool lupus into thinking it is not there. There is no magic formula to make it disappear. No cure, no hope, just pain. Like it or not, the stiffness, depression, rashes, lack of energy, brain fog, sensitivity to sunlight, etc. will always be there to remind you that you are not like everyone else. But not thinking about lupus, not letting it rule the way I live also helps me fool other people into treating me like I'm a normal, healthy person and not that girl-with-the-weird-illness-that's-not-really-cancer-and-is-probably-just-really-lazy.
Amster Lupus Butterfly Walk Logo

I have lupus. This is not something I can forget nor something I can realistically ignore. I can try not to think about it, but it's there. But truth of the matter is, it's here now and it will always be. I can treat the symptoms, pump my body full of odd chemicals, avoid sick people or people who look like they might be sick, avoid stress, exercise when I can, eat healthy, wear sunscreen, and avoid heels, and hope my friends understand when I lack the energy to even get out of bed, but fact is, I will always have lupus. So I find that it's better to not think about it. To get out of bed when I can and stay in when I can't. To enjoy the very few moments when I am not in pain and to simply ignore the people who try minimize my illness.

I have lupus. I don't like it but I must live with it. So try not to judge when my hair isn't done or I'm wearing flats when everyone else has heels because most days, I'm just grateful I was able to get out of bed.

For more information about Lupus:
The LUPUS Foundation of America
U.S. National Library of Medicine

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