Try to Stay Stress-Free!



Stress is one thing that most of us cannot avoid. No matter how hard we try to be stress-free, it always seems to creep up on us.  For those of us with lupus, we need to keep stress out of our lives as much as possible.  Stress is indeed one of our worst enemies.  Being stressed out can cause a flare, which is never good.  Stress can also prolong your flare and/or symptoms.  Having a free mind and a positive attitude always helps reduce stress. Do everything you can to keep your stress levels down.  For me, the first step to doing this is being able to identify stress factors in my life.  Sometimes we do not even realize that we are stressed. Learn your body and how your illness reacts to stress, so that you can identify trouble brewing. Remember...Less Stress = Longer Life!!


Tips to eliminate stress: 

  • Know what stresses you out.
  • Attempt to eliminate those stress factors.
  • Do something you enjoy when you feel stressed.
  • Try to relax. (warm bath, music, meditation)
  • Talk to someone close to you.
  • Send me a tweet or Facebook message ;0)
I am always here to listen!! Take care and try to be stress-free!!

With Love,

July & August Awareness

August Awareness
Children's Eye Health and Safety Month

National Immunization Awareness Month

World Breastfeeding Week (1-7)

July Awareness☆ 
UV Safety Month
Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month

Cord Blood Awareness Month
National Cleft and Craniofacial Awareness and Prevention Month
International Group B Strep Awareness Month

Peer Support Group Meeting

Hi Lupus Supporters,


The Lupus Star Foundation will be hosting its monthly peer support group meeting this Sunday July 17th at 4pm.  The meeting will take place in Ypsilanti, MI at the Lake Shore Apartments Clubhouse (I-94, Rawsonville Rd exit). Sharing Hope Meeting Flier


 The Lupus Star Foundation support group is open to anyone with a chronic condition, such as Lupus and RA, as well as those with general health issues.  Friends and family of people with a chronic condition are also encouraged to attend (with or without the sufferer); it is important that a sufferer’s loved ones understand their condition and know how to support them. 

If you have a health condition and would like to connect with people that have similar situations please attend our peer support group meetings.  You will have the opportunity to learn new information about Lupus and other illnesses, exchange information and resources, get advice and tips, and be comforted by people who care about you and what you are going through.  Even if you feel like you do not need much support or help, your presence and story can be inspirational to someone else.  This is your chance to really help someone, and get help if you need it.

Refreshments and light snacks will be served.  Come with your story, questions and an open heart. Lupus Star Foundation is all about helping individuals, spreading awareness, and educating the public!! 

June Awareness!

This month is:

☀ Men's Health Month
☀ Home Safety Month
☀ National Aphasia Awareness Month
☀ Cataract Awareness Month
☀ National Scleroderma Awareness Month
☀ National Cancer Survivor's Day (5)
☀ World Sickle Cell Day (19)
☀ National HIV Testing Day (27)
☀ Men's Health Week (13-19)
Happy Father's Day! 
The purpose of Men’s Health Week is to heighten the awareness of preventable health problems and encourage early detection and treatment of disease among men and boys.
This week gives health care providers, public policy makers, the media, and individuals an opportunity to encourage men and boys to seek regular medical advice and early treatment for disease and injury.



Did I have Lupus as a child?

During the Lupus Star Foundation (Lupus Star Website) peer support group meeting, I mentioned that I might have had lupus long before I was diagnosed.  Throughout my childhood I had several issues that were just kind of brushed aside and not paid much attention to.  For example, as a child I used to have chest pains quite often. The doctors always said it was just a pulled muscle, because of my sports and dance and such. Ummm, maybe it was pleurisy people. Also, I was very active, but when I ran it was quite painful for my ankles and feet.  I just thought I was slow and out of shape.  


When I got a bit older, like high school and my first year of college, I would sometimes have to stop dancing because of exhaustion.  I mean I just could not finish performances sometimes.  I would faint or come really close to it.  This even got me kicked off of the marching band pommerette team.  I would run out of practice because I felt so bad and I couldn't keep up.  I thought I just sucked.  Did I have lupus back then?  I probably did, but the doctors did not catch it.  They always put the symptoms off as something else.  


As an adult something finally brought the disease all the way out. Yeah thanks!! Now that I know all the symptoms and different ways to diagnose lupus, I think that I definitely had the lupus all along.  Lying dormant within this little girl, that had no idea what lupus was. 


It is important to take any change in your health seriously.  It may seem like nothing, but it could be very serious.  You have to take control and understand what is going on with your body. If your chest is hurting, it means that something is wrong.  You need to find out what it is.  It is not normal for you to have pain for months at a time.  Get it checked, and make the doctors figure it out.  Don't just believe what they tell you!!  They are "practicing", they do not know everything.  As my fellow lupus survivor told us "you have to be your own advocate"; he is absolutely right.  Get tested and checked out when your feeling "funny", it could save your life. :0)


With Love,

QUICK FACT 19



Lupus is not related to HIV/AIDS. In lupus, the immune system is overactive, while in HIV or AIDS, the immune system is underactive.

World Lupus Day 2011



We all know that May is Lupus Awareness Month, but today just happens to be World Lupus Day.  We ask everyone to wear Purple or Orange to spread awareness and support of Lupus.  You can find information on www.worldlupusday.org.  Many regions around the world are celebrating World Lupus Day in their own special way.  Below you will find information about how the United States (Lupus Foundation of America) is spreading awareness on World Lupus Day.  


Group: Lupus Foundation of America -- National OfficeEvent:  World Lupus Day is just one of the featured events in a month-long observance of Lupus Awareness Month in the United States. As part of the observance, the  LFA is engaging constituents through its social networking sites, including Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and the LFA Blog to secure commitments by individuals and organizations to do one thing to raise awareness of lupus. The LFA has developed two eCards and is urging people with lupus to Send an ecard to 10 friends on May 10.  We're also are asking people worldwide to make a commitment to Band Together for Lupus by signing an online petition

   
Date: May 10th, 2011 


Personally, I will be sending out more e-cards and spreading awareness on various social websites as always.  Make sure you get your purple or orange wristbands and wear them proudly.  Also, sign the petition and send out as many e-cards as possible.  Let's Celebrate!!  Let's Spread Awareness!!



Click Here to purchase Lupus Merchandise

May Awareness

❀ Lupus Awareness Month
❀ Arthritis Awareness Month  
❀ Hepatitis Awareness Month
❀ Employee Health and Fitness Moth
❀ Healthy Vision Month
❀ Mental Health Month
❀ National Women's Health Week (8-14)
❀ Food Allergy Awareness Week (8-14)
❀ National Women's Check-up Day (9)
❀ World Lupus Day (10)
❀ HIV Vaccine Awareness Day (18)
❀ Health Safety Awareness Day (27)

Lupus Awareness Month



Lupus and Your Career

With the economy bouncing back, many of us (myself included) are going to be entering the workforce again.  For those of us that are living with Lupus, this poses many challenges besides the quality of our resumes!  Many of the butterflies wrestle with themselves about whether or not they should disclose the illness to perspective employers, and if they do, when is the right time?  What should I say?

As a recent MBA grad, I have put some thought into this process and have offered some tips that may help my fellow butterflies and anyone else living with a chronic illness:

Should I say something?
Yes, it is definitely in your best long-term interest to disclose your illness.  We all know that a flare up can occur at anytime.  When it hits, we have enough to worry about.  Worrying about our job security shouldn't be one of them.  That's why it is important for your employer to know what you are dealing with before it becomes a problem.  Letting them know in the midst of a health crisis can make you look unreliable and untrustworthy. 

So when is the best time?
You should disclose your illness whenever you feel comfortable. I would say the sooner the better. A few times I have waited a while after I was hired to say something, but I have also mentioned my condition during the interview on several occasions.  I would rather know in advance that the organization has a problem with my condition.  You will be able to tell by paying attention to non-verbal and verbal cues, even if they do not come out and say so. Even though it is against the law to discriminate, companies can still do it and hide the real reason. So I say if it flows naturally in conversation, and you feel comfortable, TELL them!! If you are lucky you will have a supervisor that is understanding and supportive.  I hope that you all will have successful careers, which are fulfilling and make you super duper happy.


With Love,

QUICK FACT 18


In approximately 10 percent of all lupus cases, individuals will have symptoms and signs of more than one connective tissue disease. A physician may use the term "overlap syndrome" or "mixed connective tissue disease" to describe this condition. 

Depending on how lupus affects their body, some people with lupus may need additional care from specialists, like a dermatologist for skin problems, a nephrologist for kidney disease, or a cardiologist for heart complications.

Should I Take the Stronger Medicine?

Well, I have an important decision to make.  My Rheumy wants to start taking Methotrexate in order to stop taking Prednisone.  If you don't know what Methotrexate is, it is a mild form of chemotherapy.  I am not sure that I want to begin to take such a strong and possibly damaging medication.  My Rheumy really thinks this will improve my health.  She was so excited when I told her to go ahead and write the prescription.  I didn't say I would take the pill. I didn't even say I would fill the prescription.  She was still very happy. I guess she really believes that this will help me in the long run.


So, I turned in the prescription, but did not pick it up yet.  I will probably get it tomorrow.  Still not sure about taking it.  It has terrible side effects. Info of Methotrexate One minute I tell myself "heck no I'm not taking a chemo pill." Then when I am lying down feeling absolutely terrible, with pain all over my body I say "screw it, just try it." I am ready to stop feeling so bad so often. But chemo....geez!!! I am just very confused right now.  I have talked to several people that take it and have had no real problems.  That is nice to hear. I just don't know! 


Confused and Losing it,