I have been running races since 2004, completed my first full marathon in 2006, and have run 15 road marathons, one trail marathon, and one full Ironman. In February 2013, I was diagnosed with SLE, which affected my joints and kidneys, and landed me in the hospital with a blood clot in my calf, a piece of which had traveled to my lung, which can be life-threatening. I know how lucky I am to have received such great care, and due in large part to my access to good doctors, information, and a fantastic support group of family, friends, and fellow lupus patients, I have been able to complete three of my marathons since my diagnosis. New York City will take me to my 15th state on my quest to run all 50, and I can't think of a better time and a better cause for my first effort at fundraising.
Funds raised for the S.L.E. Lupus Foundation will help with their many outreach, education, and support programs that help people with lupus in NYC, particularly minorities in disadvantaged areas. Did you know that African-American women are three times more likely than Caucasians to have lupus, and Asian Americans and Latinas are twice as likely as Caucasians to have the disease, with Native Americans being disproportionately affected as well? It is my hope that the work the foundation does will help more people have faster diagnoses and access to better care so that more people can be as lucky as I've been if they must be burdened with such a cruel illness.
Thank you for taking time to read my story, and thank you for your support of Team Life Without Lupus!
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