YAY for treatable diseases!

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This morning I went to church, for the first time since Ash Wednesday. For those of y'all who know me, I used to the quite the church goer. I was there practically every Sunday, sometimes almost all day. And you could usually find me at church during the week as well. I spent a lot of time at my church over the years, met a lot of people, worked different jobs, all while spreading a lot of cheer. Of course the past few years have changed my opinion about church and what it means to me. My Mom still gets upset and asked ten thousand questions and spouts a lot of phrases. Her favorite one is "You used to love church!" Notice the use of the word "used" which happens to be past tense. That means at one point, I did love church, at another point, I didn't love church as much.

Here's my deal with church, I'm not a big fan of the organized religion thing. People, like my mom, confuse spirituality with religion. I am a spiritual person, am not particularly religious. But that does not mean I don't believe in God. Believe me, I believe in God, I pray too. What bothers me about organized religion is the politics that really have nothing to do with the spiritual aspect. But some how, some way, the politics tend to dribble into the spiritual beliefs. It can often leave a person feeling torn between an issue they are passionate about and their faith.

I also don't like how gossipy church can be. I understand that people are curious, especially when it comes to me. When I tell a person something, I'm telling them in confidence unless I say "Go ahead, tell so and so." Or with this blog, it's public information and that's the way I've decided it should be. It was a personal choice which I was able to make for myself. The problem with my church is that if you tell one person one thing, by the end of the day, everyone will know. It happened a few months ago when my Mom told something about me that I was planning to keep a secret until I had a definitive answer. When I showed up for the Christmas Eve service, everyone, and I mean everyone, was bombarding me with questions.

Anyway, this morning at church I got to see some awesome people. I'm talking my favorite church folk that I've known forever, who I love and trust. Of course there are some new people too that I'm growing fond of as well. Everyone was thrilled to see me and I was feeling particularly bouncy this morning. I suppose that made everything better for everyone. I was talking to one amazing woman, I've known her for what feels like forever. I used to babysit her kids eons and eons ago. And her husband is a doctor by day and rock star by night. Or at least he's a rocker and roller at church. She comes up to me and she says "YAY for having a treatable disease!" We high fived, it was totally awesome because my hand-eye coordination stinks and I didn't miss!

All of that got me thinking, yay for having a treatable disease! Some people at church don't quite understand lupus. They think because I'm feeling better that I no longer have lupus. I will always have lupus, there will be points where it doesn't flare and make me really sick. There will be points when I will get really sick. In a way, I've embraced my lupus, I can't get rid of it, I can't cure it, so I have to live with it. Some days it can be really obnoxious and other days it's as if I'm completely healthy. Either way, it's a part of me, it's in my soul, it is embedded in my identity.

Some people say "I may have lupus, but lupus doesn't have me." For me, lupus has me, but in a good way. Lupus motivates, inspires, pushes, moves, and pulls me. It forces me not to get trapped in all the bad things this disease brings. It makes me overcome obstacles I never thought I could. Having lupus is like living with a drill instructor, life coach, artist, best friend, and worst enemy, all rolled up into one. Every day is a new day, every week is a roller coaster, and every month is filled with goals that have been accomplished. It's my life and I'm a better person for everything I've endured. And I can smile like I do because I know I can continue on with the long journey I'm facing. I've always been strong, but it helps when you have a drill instructor, life coach, artist, best friend, and worst enemy pushing you to do your very best.

Loverly Lupie Me