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My Lupus Story

Nothing is Impossible with God
How will you feel if your doctor will tell you that you have SLE (Systemic Lupus Erythematosus) and there’s no cure on it? In 2002, I was 19 years old, on my 2nd year college when I had hematoma on my legs and I easily get tired so I went to see a hematologist to find out what was it.
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Letter from a Butterfly

Today I Saw Myself


Today I saw myself as I was many years ago,
fraid to think of what tomorrow’d bring, why was this so?
In eyes wet with tears of feeling, Lord, why should it be?
Why should I be so ill like this; oh, why should it be me?

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Nothing is Impossible with God PDF Print E-mail
Written by Claire   
Monday, 05 April 2010
How will you feel if your doctor will tell you that you have SLE (Systemic Lupus Erythematosus) and there’s no cure on it? In 2002, I was 19 years old, on my 2nd year college when I had hematoma on my legs and I easily get tired so I went to see a hematologist to find out what was it. The doctor asked me to undergo some laboratory blood tests. When I got the result and let her read it, she referred me to a rheumatologist.

When I went to Dr. Edgar Ramiterre, rheumatologist, he then again asked me to have other laboratory blood tests such as ANA Profile, DSDNA test, ESR test and other necessary tests. A couple of days after, I got the result and went back to my rheumatologist, and when he read the results, he asked me a lot of questions such as, aside from hematoma, what do you feel, do you have mouth sores, joint paints and a lot more questions…

I just answered, hematoma, easily get tired and joint pains especially in the morning. As he was holding the results, he told me, you have a possible Lupus. It was my first time to hear that kind of sickness so I asked him, what is Lupus? What is the cause and what is the cure? He answered, Lupus is an autoimmune disease which can involve several organ systems and become a chronic, complicated and life threatening disease; with Lupus will have abnormalities in one or more vital organs such as the kidneys, heart, lungs and brain. Until now, the cause is unknown; possible that it is hereditary with no cure. So he told me to take prednisone (steroids), pain reliever for my joint pains and not allowed on stress and direct sunlight. While my doctor was explaining all of these things, I can’t explain how I felt and how will I respond to it. When I went out from his clinic, I went straight to my friend’s car and there I cried while my friend who was also in tears was giving me comfort, telling me, you can make it, just be strong and take your medications. Since then I had my quarterly check up, I’m taking my medicines and I always bring umbrella wherever I go. All these years I kept my health condition with my parents because I don’t want them to get worried and be bothered about it but my rheumatologist knew about my decision.

In April 2005, I graduated in my college degree. I work as a marketing executive on an international insurance company for 2 months and my 2nd job was under the distributor of Nestle Philippines.

On August 2005, it was my first major attacked when my brain was affected, I had seizure and I was like a baby then. I was admitted, brought to the ICU of Brokenshire Hospital and was on COMATOSE for 3 days. This time, my parents knew that I had this kind disease. While I was at the ICU, one of my friend and Dr. Ramiterre explained everything to my parents. My doctor told my parents how my sickness started as well as my reason of not telling them. I was also referred to Dr. Marcos Ong,a neurologist-psychiatrist specialist for my brain. While at the ICU, my doctors gave up on me. They said, they can’t do anything about it. My rheumatologist said, “prayers nalang ang pag-asa.” By the grace and mercy of God, and the prayers of family and friends after 3 days, I woke up and very much conscious but still I can’t recognize all people visiting me. I was transferred at the room then was discharged after couple of days. After a week, I went back to work.

On November 2005, rashes came out of my face like a 3rd degree burn and it was bleeding. I was again admitted for a week at San Pedro Hospital for me to be treated by Dra. Karen Alabado, a dermatologist. After this attacked, I was not allowed by my dad to work outside his business. I just worked at our family insurance business helping my dad.

In 2006, my kidneys were infected. I got high fever and have high puss cells on my urine. This time I was referred to Dra. Salegon and Dr. Josephino Ramos, a nephrologists. Almost every month I was admitted to the hospital because antibiotics for my kidney infection are in vials and must go through intravenous. On this year, I also went through pulse therapy; supposed to be 6 months but since no improvement on my kidneys, I just have it for 4 months then I just had oral medications.

On March 2007, I went to Australia to have my 3months vacation. During my stay there, I brought with me my medications (I was like a pharmacy). But then I also took some food supplements that were recommended by my cousin who also have an autoimmune disease. Time came that I immediately stopped my medications and just took the supplements. After a month, rashes came out of my face and I had LBM. In Australia, I was led by God to go to Hillsong Church where God took away all my pains, worries and doubts and He filled me up with hope, peace, love and joy. After 45 days of staying there, I decided to come home because I’m not feeling good anymore. With that kind of condition, God was with me and He brought me home safe in Davao, Philippines.      

May 2007, after 2 days upon my arrival in Davao, I was vomiting fresh blood and dead blood. I called up my godfather who is a doctor and told him about my condition. Immediately I was brought to Davao Medical School Foundation Hospital and He was the one who contacted and informed my other doctors. I was admitted on a room, took all necessary laboratory tests and was transferred to the ICU. When the results came out, my nephrologists told my parents that I need to undergo dialysis because my createnine was high, so I was transferred to Brokenshire Hospital ICU. I was referred to a vascular surgeon to put my dialysis temporary access on the right part of my neck. After the access was placed, I had my first dialysis. After couple of days, I was transferred to a private room. Because of high createnine, I had my dialysis ever other day. After 10 days at the hospital, I was advised to go home and have my dialysis as outpatient. After a night, I can’t sleep at home because I have this dry cough, so I went back to the hospital just to nebulize. After nebulization, I went home. Same thing, when I lie down and go to sleep, can’t sleep and keep on coughing. My dad and my sister decided to bring me back to the hospital. I was again admitted and had a stat dialysis at 2am. This time I was referred to Dr. Jessie Orcasitas, pulmonologist. After my dialysis, I had an x-ray then brought to the room. Doctors and nurses were monitoring me. Then one nurse told me, if your fingers will become bluish we will intubate you (Endotracheal Tube). I just answered “okey.” I really don’t know what it is anyway. I can just see doctors, nurses and hospital aids are inside my room. When my fingers turn bluish and my oxygen body level was going down, they intubated me; put that tube on my throat connecting to my lungs that will produce oxygen to my body and that machine will help me breath. They also put Nasol Gastric Tube (way for my liquid food supply). After they put that, I was again brought to Renal Dialysis Unit to have dialysis for the 2nd time on that same day because on my X-ray result they found out that my lungs is full of phlegm (pneumonia). After my dialysis, I was brought straight to the ICU. At the ICU they tie my hands and legs because I’m hallucinating and they can’t control me (so toxic). All medicines were through intravenous and my food was liquid through NGT. There I stayed for 9 days of monitoring and medications of kidneys and lungs. On the 3rd day of medication, no improvement on my condition and it became worst because they found out that not only phlegm but there’s water on my lungs as well. My pulmonologist decided to change my medicines. One Sunday night, I vomited blood on the tubes and I was on COMATOSE. My 3 doctors gave up on me. They told my parents, we can’t do anything about it. Their interpretation was all the veins of my lungs erupted. My rheumatologist said,”prayers nalang ang pag-asa.” Since my doctors had given up, my parents also gave up on me but GOD never did. Family, Friends and love ones continued to pray and beg God for life. A pastor visited me at the ICU, prayed for me and led me to a prayer of accepting CHRIST as my personal Lord and Savior. My dad signed the hospital waiver to stop medications and no heroic measures will be done. The following day (Monday), I had my dialysis, because that was ordered before my dad signed the waiver. As I had my dialysis I was in deep sleep and the nurses at the dialysis unit did not have their attention on me. They are attending other patient. While I was on comatose, in deep sleep and unconscious, I took all the tubes in my nose connected to my stomach (NGT) and in my mouth connected to my lungs that helps me breathe and produces oxygen to my body (Endotracheal Tube). All the renal dialysis staffs were panic, they called up doctors and they backed me up with oxygen through the nose. The resident doctor called up my rheumatologist, asking if they will put the endotracheal tube back and my doctor told them, not anymore since there was already a waiver from the parents. While I’m on comatose at the ICU, everybody were thinking that I’m suffering and in pain.

After that, I was conscious and thirsty. I really believed that it was JESUS CHRIST who took all the tubes and brought me back to life. After that incident, I was brought back to ICU for monitoring. After 2 days, they found me stable and were transferred to a private room. During my stay at the room, one night, while my brothers and I was sleeping, one of my brother woke up when he saw the tubes at my bedside. Only to find out that the tubes that he saw was my access for dialysis. So he panic and called a nurse. The nurses and doctors were so amazed that no blood went out when I pulled out the tube. I really don’t know that I pulled the tube out since I’m sleeping. I said, it was GOD. The next day, my parents contacted Dr. Victor Hofilena, family friend heart surgeon and he put me another temporary access on the left part. Couple of months later, he was also the one who operated and put my permanent access (AV Fistula). My dialysis was continuous day after day. There was a time when my eye sight was affected. I almost got blind but I kept it myself and told God, “Lord, I lift to you my eyes.” I didn’t tell my parents nor didn’t I consult for a doctor. After 3 days, still the same but words in the Bible was so clear and spiritual text messages was also clear as well. After a week, my eye sight went back. JESUS restored my sight. Day after day, my doctors were visiting me and I can remember my rheumatologist will visit me in the morning and come back at night. He loved to stay at my room for about 30 minutes and talk. Almost every night he will tell me, “Claire, you are such a miracle.” Until one night, he told me, “Claire, mutuo man mi nga naa pa maslabaw sa amoa” (We do believe there is Someone more superior than us). After couple of days, I was discharged from the hospital. Went home with peace and joy in my heart, as if nothing happens and from this time I had a hunger for GOD. I really believe that He was the one who brought me back to life and He gave me that faith that I didn’t have before. I lived a normal life, having dialysis 2x a week and after couple of months, increased to 3x a week. I’m going with my  to dad at the office day by day and sometimes when we fetch my mom at her office, her officemates will tell me that your mom really thought that God will take you away (my mom was crying everyday while I was at the hospital, according to her officemates).

During those days that my family, friends and love ones thought that I do not have hope anymore, in deep suffering, on comatose and in pain, God did not let me experience any pain. God separated my soul from my suffering body and it was His great love that comforted me. God is so amazing.     I’m so excited when Sunday comes and I’m attending service with my new Christian Church. I had conflicts with my parents because our family was a devoted Roman Catholic and I was a Catholic for 22 years. One day, I told my mom, I was born a Catholic but I don’t want die as a Catholic. I couldn’t find spiritual growth in there and a lot of beliefs that are contrary to Biblical Truths. It was my struggle at that time since I go to church alone without my family with me but God was so faithful.

On December 2007, I had my 2D echo test at Brokenshire Hospital to check my heart since I had chest pains. This time I was referred to a Cardiologist. While I was in the hospital waiting for lunch with the renal dialysis staffs, I fell down and immediately brought to the emergency room. I had seizure and I was brought at the ICU. I think, talk and act like a 3 year old child. My family and I spent Christmas and 2008 New Year at the hospital. While I was at the ICU, my family is at the room because my younger brother was also admitted of dengue. After a week, I was transferred to a room but still I think, talk and acted the same. After couple of days, I was discharged, dialysis was still going on. Day by day, God was healing me and I was recovering. Until I got back to normal condition and I go back to normal daily routine.

On November 2008, I attended a prayer healing at Christ Fellowship Church with Pastor Dave Magalong because I was invited by Tita Ester and Tita Edna. I felt God’s presence in that place. While he was praying, I can feel the heat on my body and I know it was God’s healing touch upon me. Before I was prayed, I’m not urinating anymore since 2007 when I started dialysis. During the prayer, he told me, that I can urinate. When I went home, I feel healing and I urinated and my monthly menstruation came back to normal.

JESUS HEALED MY LUPUS INSTANTLY. Since December 2008, because God healed my Lupus and was able to urinate, my parents were attending Sunday service at Christ fellowship Church and my healing led them to accept Christ as their personal Lord and Savior.

My family and I were so happy to spend our Christmas 2008 and New Year 2009 at home. On July 2009, my steroids and other drug medications were cut off and I took food supplements like aloe vera, calcium, vitamin E and other more. God is so faithful and nothing is impossible with Him. There is no disease that He cannot heal. He is our greatest Healer. Remember, my doctor told me that Lupus has no cure; but GOD healed my Lupus. Now, by the grace and healing of God, I do not have any manifestation of Lupus anymore and my dialysis went down to 2x a week. God is healing and restoring my health day by day. GOD healed me both spiritually and physically.

Since the day God totally healed my Lupus, sometimes I have minor sickness and pain that only God heals. I can feel that God wants me to be always dependent on Him and He wants to let me know that He loves me so much that whatever healing I will ask Him in prayer and in faith through Pastor Dave, GOD always answer prayers. God is full of surprises.

In every situation, faith in God is one of the most important factors. There is hope in Christ even in the strongest storm in your life. On the other hand, if you have a positive perspective with all that is happening in your life, this will help you overcome all situations. As for me, God uses my sickness to bring me closer to Him and His healing power brought my family closer to Him.

As God said, In Romans 8:28, And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.

Sick people needs HELP from their family, friends and love ones. (Hope, Encouragement, Love and Prayers). We just have to trust in God because all things are possible with HIM.

TO GOD BE ALL THE GLORY AND HONOR!
Comments
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laureen   |Author |2011-10-14 16:00:48
avatar so touching ...always have trust in yourself and in god....
tart29   |Author |2011-08-03 15:03:35
i thank god for i found this column..i am related to this subject..
hanypip   |Author |2011-04-29 19:35:55
avatar GOD IS GOOD!! nka relate ako sa story.. we almost experience the same
condition pero hndi pa ako umaabot sa dialysis.. up to now nsa hosp prin ako
recovering.. i hope magtuloy tuloy na pag galing mo.. GOD BLESS YOU!!
tart29  - to God be the glory!   |Author |2011-04-01 12:45:36
as i read ur story,my dear claire,i was teary eye,bec.we have almost similar
story,on how u beat lupus,as well as spiritual insights,mas madami kang
pinagdaanan compares to mine..naka relate ako ng madami,i told my nephews to
read ur story,kc i'm the only one in the family who had sle,sa lahi namin..i
want to know more about you..can we be friends?..thanks for ur inspiring
story..God gave us a second chance,to live,in order us to spread His Words,by
giving testimonies on how God works in our life...hindi na tayo ang nabubuhay
kundi si Jesuschrist ang nabubuhay sa atin...thanks for sharing your
testimony...Godless...
tart29  - hello!   |Author |2011-04-01 09:12:20
Amen!thank God i'ved search this column..i'vd been diagnosed lupus 2003,since
then,i'm really overwhelmed to read all lupus patients,stories,on how they cope
and have a big faith in God...we're all survivors!thank God me paghuhugutan tayo
ng strength,by the mercy of God...really keep the faith burnin...remember
corinthians 10:13...
curttney   |Author |2011-01-21 09:44:48
avatar He is so amazing...no one can compare God... we sometimes dont understand His
ways... but we really have to trust His will.... having Lupus doesnt mean He
abandon us.... now we just realize that we we're so close in His presence....
God will heal us in the right time....
lupy  - hi   |Author |2011-01-05 08:13:42
avatar its so amazing, im tear eyed! i have a goose bump while reading your story! God
is good. may God continues His Miracle for all of us Amen!
katcatapusan   |Author |2010-11-14 01:59:25
avatar Faith changes everything! We have been sick but in that way we felt,see and
realized God's presence better than we were in good condition.God Bless!
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