Lupus has been an unwelcome companion in my health journey for many, many years now. Over time, my innate enthusiasm for greeting each morning was gradually eroded, and even more so as my lupus marched seemingly ever on in its escalating attack against connective tissues. However, after many cycles of ups and downs, an irrefutable truth has been demonstrated: future good days can always be expected to follow present bad days. This thought involves faith and feeds sanity.
Over the past weeks, I have slowly acknowledged turning to a new chapter in the telling of my lupus story. Malaise, miserable nights and foggy-brained mornings have quietly tiptoed out of my daily and nightly experiences. There were no fireworks announcing the change, and no dramatic hoopla. Instead, lupus arthritis pain and joint swelling, mouth ulcers, dry eyes/mouth, fatigue and other symptoms have been slowly reducing by almost imperceptible increments. Like the quiet hush after a raging storm, it has subtly dawned on me that in the stillness of absent symptoms — I am no longer standing in the midst of a torrential lupus storm! Occasionally, I have turned backward and briefly re-read the earlier parts of the adventure, but soon find myself continuing to read on in the newest calmer pages.
Morning after morning I have awakened feeling more alert and comfortable, almost forgetting to notice the absence of customary discomforts in the calm. Night after night pain medication to silence burning peripheral leg neuropathy sits unused, as these symptoms’ frequency and intensity have lessened. Dreams replaced insomnia in the wee hours of the night, previously haunted with discomfort and malaise. Now, each dawn holds a new sense of rested refreshment, and once constant morning lupus headaches and deep brain ache and mental fog are now just mild echos that gently lift away without great effort.
In contrast to the perennial flare that connected hundreds of days of pain, stiffness and mentally clouded mornings, I am now quite comfortable and perhaps even cheerfully awakening. The quietness of my lupus symptoms emerges as a possible “new normal” experience! Most recent mornings find me ready to face the day ahead, while pausing to acknowledge and thank God for this long-awaited lupus improvement.
After eight infusions, I believe the Benlysta may actually be starting to significantly control my lupus symptoms! Yippee! I must admit this realization sneaked up on me quietly. I am so thankful to live in a time and place where medical research has finally yielded new drugs for treating lupus. We, who have access to western medical care, have multitude blessings to be thankful for!