Thursday, June 9, 2011

Having Lupus and What It Means To Be A Survivor

The definition of a survivor is a person who continues to function or prosper in spite of  opposition, hardship, or setback. Everyone has a story to tell and everyone has survived one way or another. Well I am going to share another part of my life with  you. Just as the Vietnam War was ending another uprising was starting. If you have ever seen the movie "The Killing Fields" that movie will give you an idea about what I was being born as a Cambodian. It was a time of sorrow and pain.  Thousands of people died as a result of one person who was basically an evil dictator. Most would say that he was a Asian version of Hitler. His name was Pol Pot. He had a regime that was called the Khmer Rouge (his army) and whoever didn't follow him were killed. He had ordered landmines that were placed in the fields and anyone who stepped on it was killed instantly others lost more than just their dignity they lost there limbs . I only have bits and pieces of stories that may have or have not happened to my biological parents. According to the information that my adoptive parents were given when they adopted me my biological parents were killed in a rocket attack and judging from a shrapnel scar on the back of my leg and  I believe that my mother was holding me when she died. I was 9 or 10 months old when I was adopted. I was one of many babies and children who were orphaned in the massacre .There was a wealthy gentlemen who wanted to help. He had sent a few commercial airplanes for the orphaned children and babies The called it "Operation Baby Lift"  Over 3,000 children were rescued one of the planes that was caring the orphans actually didn't even make it off the ground it crashed into a rice paddy.  That particular plane was carrying 350 people on it and only 154 survived.

When I was a baby my prognosis of my developmental abilities were slow. I was malnourished and very sick.  My birthday isn't really my birthday at all it was given to me. I spent most of my life wondering what my mother was like or if I had any family that was still alive. I would love to visit Cambodia one day, because it really is a beautiful place. When I was 10 years old I had a grand mal seizure and it was so bad that I was put into a drug induced coma. Then 6 years later to the day I was diagnosed with lupus.  I had my lupus under control and was afraid to even have kids and I really didn't know if I could have kids.  Well I had 2 beautiful daughter's  and then in the summer of  '97 is when I had a flare up and almost died.  All the things that I have gone through I went through for a reason.  For the longest time I didn't know what do to do with the burdens that I was carrying.  I fought my hardest to stay healthy so I could watch my girl's become young ladies and eventually watch them get married and have children of there own.  Having survived all those things in my life have helped me a better person, a better mother, and a better wife. My family is what I am inspired by.
  I know that for some people it is not always easy for them to live with lupus and be happy about there situation whatever it may be. Honestly I don't know when and if I will  have another really bad flare up. What I do know is that I think I was born to survive. My wish is to reach out to others who are suffering. There is always a light of this tunnel.

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