When you are diagnosed with an autoimmune disease, or any disease for that matter, those simple treasures you once took for granted become things you wish you would have appreciated. You become without hesitation, as if your mind is almost prone to it, one whom thinks THEE absolute worse about your diagnosis and what is to come soon thereafter. I know that to be true.
When diagnosed with lupus in 2012, and way before my inital diagnosis, my hair was the first to go. I never really understood the reasons behind it falling out in such drastic amounts until now. After the hair, was my mind. Lupus brain fog was and is the absolute worse. The lupus took a shot at my brain as well. It came in the form of a mass the neurologist discovered that would later be diagnosed as Cerebellar Tonsillar Ectopia. I would have to monitor this new discovery every three to six months. With the brain discovery came my lung issue. The every day tasks such as walking up and down the stairs of my home and eating yogurts and ice cream became something I quickly dubbed a “no, no!” The inflammation in and around my lungs was introduced to me as Pleurisy. As a result of that, I had to refrain from ALL of the dairy products in my diet in order to keep the inflammation down to a minimal.
That wasn’t all that lupus stole from me. Simple treasures, things such as enjoying ‘fun in the sun’ became a thing of the past. My photosensitivity made it extremely hard to accompany my son to the park or swimming pool. Photosensitivity made it difficult to enjoy living in the SUNSHINE STATE. I could no longer enjoy the sunny beaches or the bike ride on the boardwalk.
Simple treasures such as going out clubbing with friends and co workers turned into many cancelled nights that kept me prisoner to my home with prednisone and placquenil as my cellmates.
One thing I have learned after being diagnosed with this disease is that one should never take anything for granted, for everything that gets taken for granted gets taken away. Where I took pride in my hair, it began to fall out. Where I took pride in being able to consume a salted pretzel milkshake on the daily, my lungs began to fill up with inflammation making it difficult to breathe. And where as I used to bask in the sunlight rather at a football game or at a playground with my son, I now cannot step foot out into the sun without long sleeves, a hat, sunglasses and pants.
“For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”
I wish I could gain it all back. I Treasure now the simple things, and never will I neglect them again.