I’m Walking to End Lupus. Join Me?
I am asking you for a donation to the Lupus Foundation of America, North Carolina Chapter because I feel very strongly about this cause due to the direct devastating affect this disease has had on me and my family.
Our daughter Denise passed away in September 2018 from complications of Lupus. She suffered an acute bilateral ischemic stroke. Both of her carotid arteries were blocked by blood clots. The damage was sudden and catastrophic.
It is said, to lose a child unexpectantly is perhaps the greatest pain a parent will ever face. However, there are no real words to adequately describe the overwhelming heartbreak. I remain forever grateful to have known such an amazing person. I am so proud to be able to not only call her my daughter, but also my friend and ‘special’ hero. I miss her so much!
Denise was first diagnosed with Lupus at age 19 and dealt with the physical and emotional effects of this disease for 20 years suffering through many complications caused by Lupus. Her medical records are voluminous due to the many doctor appointments, emergency room visits, hospital admissions including numerous ICU stays and surgeries. Lupus was responsible for four heart attacks resulting two aortic stent placements, emergency nephrectomy of one kidney and chronic lupus involvement in the other, surgeries to repair spontaneous perforations in her colon resulting in partial loss of sigmoid colon with additional surgeries for two ileostomies followed by two colostomies, development of numerous abdominal abscesses with JP drain placements and life threating infections, vasculitis, pericarditis, dyspnea and numerous chronic issues including rheumatoid arthritis pain, neuropathies, mental ‘fog’, rashes, fatigue and cataracts among many other things.
Denise was a beautiful, loving, vibrant young woman who faced more than her fair share of pain and suffering. Her strength, courage, resiliency and dignity in dealing with very serious and life-threatening medical complications for over 20 years will forever continue to awe and inspired me. She was truly a warrior.
Though she had every right to dwell on the negatives surrounding her condition, she remained upbeat and optimistic, determined to beat the hand she had been dealt. She realized at a younger age than most what was really important in life: Time is precious. Take nothing for granted.
We had no idea that she had touched many people over the years. The sentiments we received after her death were remarkable and a testament to the person she was. We were blown away by the positive impact she had had on so many.
Lupus is an unpredictable and misunderstood autoimmune disease that ravages different parts of the body. Lupus is debilitating and destructive, has a broad range of symptoms, hits out of nowhere, and has no known cause and no known cure. Yet, research for treatment or a cure remains underfunded.
In honor and remembrance of Denise, we have formed a team called “D’z PAQ” and will be participating in the Charlotte Walk to End Lupus Now event on May 18th. Walk to End Lupus Now events provide people affected by lupus and their families and friends with the opportunity to come together for one unified purpose: ending lupus.
Funds raised by the Walk to End Lupus Now go towards supporting life-saving research, education and advocacy initiatives to bring an end to lupus. We’ve joined the fight, and we hope you will too along with thousands of walkers across the nation to raise money for lupus research, increase awareness of lupus, and rally public support for the estimated 1.5 million Americans who suffer from its brutal impact.
Together, we can solve the cruel mystery of lupus. Thank you for your generosity!