Lupus is an ugly diagnosis. It is one that comes with an unpredictable future. Some people get the medications and they are OK, others have a revolving door at the hospital, and some succumb. You just have no idea if it will affect you in ways that will keep you in pain or that will send you into remission. As for me, I am chasing remission with every fiber of my being. I have claimed it as my own and I affirm it daily. As a result, I have made changes and have more good days than bad.
Lupus has a way of making me review my entire life when it hits me in a way that shifts my entire world. For me, lupus stole it all. Mentally, physically, emotionally, financially, and spiritually — everything for me changed. When I first got this diagnosis and shared the news, I got a lot of “I’m going to pray for you,” and “By His stripes, you are healed.” I also got a few scriptures that talked about how God allows things to happen to get your attention, or that implied I wasn’t giving Him enough glory. (The story of Job was the reference).
Now, to be honest, I have always questioned religion, but not spirituality. I often have wondered how the Jesus I learned about possibly could understand all of our problems despite never experiencing many of them. A man who never married or had children can understand infidelity in a marriage and wayward kids? When I would ask about this, I was met either with confusion or told not to question things. This never worked for me.
When I got lupus and these religious excerpts kept coming, I found no comfort in them. When it was shared with me that perhaps I’d done something to deserve this by not paying enough homage, I decided that if this was how things were, I wanted no part of the selfish tantrum this deity was having, because I did not credit him with my home sales numbers or the many awards I was getting for doing well in my career.
I started to really review. I love my children and would never cause them pain for not giving me credit for things I may have had a direct impact on; I would simply celebrate with them while taking satisfaction in knowing they’d done well and wouldn’t be here without me. I’d been told that the one I served was the one true deity. I moved to other countries with other beliefs and saw a conflict in mine being the one and only, and them living happy lives. Less-violent lives, less-greedy lives, lives where they seemed to be happy and thriving. No wrath was visited upon them for not worshiping the one I was told was the one and only.
I often have said that I get everything I pray for, and it’s true. I consider myself a “master manifester,” but I have come to appreciate that there is a higher power I no longer call by a name. I know this probably will bother some folks. Remember, this is my journey: You worship who or what you want. I respect that, fully.
But I am realizing there is an energy at work and, in my mind, it has never walked this earth as a man, woman, or child. We have what we believe, what we work toward, and at times it comes with factors we cannot control. No matter who you are, tough times happen. Health issues, money issues, mental issues … issues.
I no longer believe we are so special that someone sitting on high takes the time to focus in on our little lives and decide that — if he is not getting enough credit — he is going to rip the rug out from under us until we bend to his will. What kind of love is that? Nope, I no longer believe in that. But I do believe in something greater than me, and I will continue to move forward with the satisfaction of knowing a deity cannot solve this for me.
Note: Lupus News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Lupus News Today or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to lupus.