Why I'm Relieved to Have a Lupus Flare


This morning I woke up with the all-knowing feeling, “I’m going into a flare.”

It’s the first one I’ve had since being in hospital over a month ago, and the last month has been pure bliss. I’ve been able to be a 24 year old and stay up late. I went out on weekends, still having enough energy to clean the house and car in the same day.

But today I woke up and I knew. I was going into a flare.

But this time, I kind of feel relieved. Yes, I know I’m going to be spending 99 percent of my time in bed over the next week or month, and yes, my mouth is currently covered in clusters of tiny ulcers that make me feel like I’ve just eaten razor blades. And yes, my face feels like it’s on fire.

I feel relieved because it’s not all in my head.

Over the past six months I’ve felt sick more often than healthy, but lupus doesn’t always like showing others that it’s there so people become skeptical. Doctors, specialists, work colleagues, and even my family gave me the old, “Maybe you should just ignore it and see if it goes away,” line. When almost everyone around you doubts you, you start to doubt yourself.

I’ve had thoughts such as:

“Maybe it is all in my head.”

“What’s the point in doing the blood work? They always come back clear.”

“Yay. Another doctors appointment where I’m going to have to justify myself to someone who doesn’t believe me.”

“Maybe it is just a cold coming on or something.”

“If you think your sick then you’re going to be sick. Think healthy.”

Today during a conversation with my fiancé I said to him, “Well, it’s not all in my head.” He was shocked that I had doubted myself, reminding me that he has always believed me and that I am the most positive person he knows.

So you know what? This time I’m OK with being sick. I’m OK about going into a flare. I’m OK that I’m currently eating apple puree as a staple in my diet, and I’m OK that I’m going to have to schedule in more naps, because it’s not all in my head. Sometimes you just need a little kick to remind yourself that you are awesome, but you really are sick.

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.

Thinkstock Image By: heckmannoleg

TOPICS
JOIN THE CONVERSATION

Related to Lupus

woman's arm with an IV in. she's holding a mug of coffee and studying for school

What 'Taking a Step Back' Taught Me About Accepting My Limitations

Over the past three months I’ve done a lot of soul searching and a lot of thinking, trying to grow personally. I have been learning to accept my limitations and to stop trying to fight the un-fightable. This all started around six months ago when I first made the application for Personal Independence Payment (PIP), [...]
Happy girl laughing against a colorful tiles background.

How I Will Use My Lupus to Give Hope to Kids With Similar Conditions

I am a full-time college student, part-time nanny, a lover of pets, an unwavering friend, a big dreamer, and I have Lupus. Lupus found me when I was a week past my 14th birthday. It found me in the prime of my teenage years. I was an active middle-school student who loved playing soccer, going to [...]
illustration of woman in a white coat looking over her shoulder suspiciously

The Depression That Results From Being Betrayed by Your Own Body

April 15th is the day I consider my lupus diagnosis anniversary because it’s the day four years ago when a kind gentleman took about two dozen vials of blood out of my arm so my rheumatologist could figure out what war was being waged within my body. A few days later, he had the answer. [...]
woman in blue sweatshirt raises arms victoriously in front of sunset

The 'Little Wins' I Celebrate While Living With Lupus

During my first six months with lupus, it felt like I took so many losses. My diet, my energy, my face, my body shape – the list just kept growing. I felt like I never got to take anything back. I never got to have a “win.” I put so much energy into focusing on all [...]