CONTRIBUTOR

I am from a small town west of Chicago, IL. I lived in and around Chicago from 1998-2008, where I completed my college degree in Information Technology and my enlistment in the Illinois Army Guard. I currently live in a small town in Southwest Virginia with my wife and three children. My lupus story really began in 2004-2005, when I began experiencing joint pains and a butterfly rash. These problems became more persistent through 2006, and in 2007 I was hospitalized with a very high fever. After several days of tests and numerous consultations, a lupus diagnosis was returned. My life was changed forever. I have experienced many complications from this disease, including but not limited to: butterfly rash, swollen joints, stage 3 chronic kidney disease with renal hypertension and fluid retention, neuropathy, and stroke/TIA like symptoms. Kidney and upper respiratory issues have hospitalized me several times since my diagnosis. A local rheumatologist, as well as Mayo Clinic, have worked on my case. I am currently in a “steady state” and under close supervision of a local nephrologist who is also an expert in lupus care.
My wife is a hospitalist nurse practitioner, and I am fortunate to have her help with my care when necessary. She and my kids are what keep me going. I enjoy spending time with my family, reading, cooking, and traveling when possible.
I work for a defense contractor currently, and manage a team of IT support professionals. My employer, and specifically my manager, have been wonderful to work with in support of my illness.