Friday, May 4, 2018

May is Lupus Awareness Month

What is lupus?

Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that can damage any part of the body (skin, joints, and/or organs). "Chronic" means that the signs and symptoms tend to last longer than six weeks and often for many years.

In lupus, something goes wrong with the immune system, which is the part of the body that fights off viruses, bacteria, and germs ("foreign invaders," like the flu). Normally our immune systems produce proteins called "antibodies" which protect the body from these invaders.

  May is Lupus Awareness Month #lupus #autoimmune #autoimmunewellness

I remember getting my diagnosis of lupus. My first thought was, "Now, I have an answer." My second thought was, "Okay, I have another autoimmune."

I have never been one to get "freaked out" over a diagnosis. That is probably because I grew up being sick all the time. I had so many allergies, ear infections and throat infections, that I had become used to always having an illness and taking medication.

For me, the worst flares are the skin sores. My skin sores range from the size of a dime to the size of a silver dollar. I have had them last a couple of weeks to a couple of months. Fatigue is the second worst flare. The third worst flare for me is Raynaud's. The pain and discoloration can be alarming when this flares.

All of you who have Lupus take care of yourself. Get the rest you need. Be good to yourself. I have learned to rely on the Lord and he will give me the strength I need for my journey on this path living with Lupus. (Philippians 4:13) May is Lupus Awareness Month #lupus #autoimmune #awareness

Facts about Lupus

  • 1.5 million Americans have Lupus
  • At least five million people suffer from Lupus globally
  • 90% of Lupus patients are women
  • 10-15% of Lupus patients die prematurely due to Lupus complications
  • No two cases of Lupus are alike
  • Lupus is 2 to 3 times more prevalent among people of color

 Symptoms of Lupus

  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Joint pain, stiffness and swelling
  • Butterfly-shaped rash on the face that covers the cheeks and bridge of the nose or rashes elsewhere on the body
  • Skin lesions that appear or worsen with sun exposure (photosensitivity)
  • Fingers and toes that turn white or blue when exposed to cold or during stressful periods (Raynaud's phenomenon)
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Dry eyes
  • Headaches, confusion and memory loss
  • Lupus Foundation of America

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Be Kind to Animals Week


The first full week of May is "Be Kind to Animals Week."
  Be Kind to Animals Week #kindness #auotimmunewellness #autoimmunedisorders #pets


Our pets are some of the best companions we could ever have. I know living with autoimmune disorders and having pets have helped me immensely. In the last twenty years I have had four dogs, three horses and a bunch of fish. All of these animals have helped me a different times and in different ways.

My dogs have helped keep me calm and relaxed. Having them around gives our house a sense of peace. Since dogs sleep for many hours of the day, it is nice seeing them curled up in a chair or on a blanket. That gives me a sense of calm.

My horses have helped me grow a backbone. They have given me confidence and have taught me that there isn't much I can't do. They are such a peaceful animal they provide a calm environment. And I'll tell you something you may not know if you have never been around horses, when they give you a hug without you asking for one, it is magical.


Let's show our pets some kindness this week!

Porkchop when he was pup.

In my neck of the woods the temperature is finally warm enough to give the dogs a bath. Applesauce loves to get a bath and she loves to be dried with a hair dryer. She likes getting in an empty bathtub and sitting in it. Crazy dog!


I bought my dogs a new bag of rawhide chews for them to work on. I've recently changed their diet to a more healthier one. I got rid of all of the biscuits and treats and have moved them over to fresh meat, rice and kibble with salmon.

My dog Porkchop has developed and allergy to chicken. I have them on a regular schedule for trips to the vet for nail trims, shots and checkups.

My horses just had their shots for the spring and now I'm looking forward to giving them their first bath of the season. They get their hooves trimmed on Tuesday.

me and april 
Me and April

me and may 
Me and May

How will you be extra kind to your pet this week? Have you been thinking about getting a pet? I have found that the best dogs are rescue dogs. All of my dogs have been rescue dogs and I love keeping up with my local SPCA to see the new dogs that are dropped off and are in need of a forever home.