I’m lying. No I don’t. I’m stressed. I’m worried about going out every day to work with a suppressed immune system when every where I look I’m told I should be locked away in a bubble to stay safe. I’m concerned about how are my three school age kids going to do distant learning with a momma who isn’t working from home, one being a kindergartener who has special education needs. I’m anxious about an uncertain future. Matter fact, all of the stress and anxiety at the beginning of this pandemic caused my lupus to react and I got shingles. For the fourth time in my life. In case you’re unaware of what shingles are, it is a reactivation of the chickenpox virus in the body, causing a painful rash. It started with tiny blister bumps on my arm that turned to a very painful rash that covered my entire left arm. Even three weeks later from when I finally went to urgent care for medication my arm still has some pain and itching from the blisters drying up. Nerve pain can last a year later. This is just what happens to me when I’m stressed. I have come to practice coping skills to try to calm my fears and tell that little voice of Worry to be quiet. I journal. I *try* to meditate. It’s hard with three kids so I wake up earlier, read my Bible app and devotions. I go for long walks in nature. I’m not sure what is calming to you in your storms. Lately tho with all that’s going on in the world we are on a negative news overload and it’s so easy to let it consume you but we have got to remember that God will bring us through this. This too shall pass. I have faith that me, my family and my loved ones will survive this. There will be times of struggle but so long as we continue to believe we gon be alright.
Rosadela Durruthy is founder of She’s Got Lupus, a non profit organization aimed to improve the lives of those living with chronic illnesses by advocating for mental health, healthy living and raising awareness.