I was never familiar with LUPUS; to be honest I didn’t even know about this disease until a couple of years ago when my mother was diagnosed with it.
I was very affected when I learned this. I knew something was wrong with her health but I never thought about the magnitude. My mother has always been a tough woman, she has always taken care of herself, that’s why I was surprised to know she was so sick. As the brave woman she is, she didn’t want anyone to know. It was my first year in New York so she didn’t want me to find out, especially because I just started school and she wanted me to be focused on my studies. However, in one of our business trips, while having dinner and drinks, she decided to tell me that something was wrong with her.
I burst into tears; I think anyone who finds out that their mother/father is sick will feel devastated. She explained me about Lupus and what does to you. This illness just happens; could be genetics, hormones or that something in the environment triggers it. There’s no specific cause of this disease. It was very hard for me to take in all this information but what calmed me down was to know that it can be treated. You can still live a full life, if you follow your treatment the right way.
When I came back to New York I did my research on it. Lupus is a disease that can damage any part of your body, and it happens because your immune system can’t tell the difference between foreign invaders (bacteria, virus, etc) and your healthy tissues, therefore attacks both by producing auto-antibodies. These cause inflammation, pain and can damage your skin, joints, and/or organs.
For the past five years, I’ve seen my mother deal with severe pain, to the point she can’t even move. This disease has negatively impacted her lower body, kidneys and liver. To me, it’s very hard to see her suffer and be under so many medications. It’s even more frustrating to be far away from her, for that reason when she is in NY or I’m in Peru, I make sure she visits the doctor regularly and that she is taking her pills.
As we all know, go under treatment can cause severe side effects and that’s one of my biggest concerns. This is why, I really wish there could be a treatment that can finally cure her, so she can go back to being the healthy and strong woman she has always been. I’ve seen her battling this illness and I’m so proud of her because she has been strong and she acts like nothing is happening. She is very positive about it and keeps her spirits up at all times -even during crisis.
This is why, I decided to join this year’s NYC’s “Walk to End Lupus Now™” annual event. If you are in New York, I will happy to have you in my team. Walk is taking place on May 18th at South Street Seaport. I’m also fundraising for this cause so any donation is truly appreciated!
I’m doing this for my mother and for all those who want a cure for LUPUS. Help me create awareness and join me and my dear mother on this battle!
For more information you can visit my fundraising page: http://lupus.donorpages.com/newyork2013/VanessaPonce
To learn more about LUPUS, please visit: http://www.lupus.org/newsite/index.html