Advocates on Steps of Congress 2013
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My Battle With Scleroderma

My Battle With Scleroderma
My Battle With Scleroderma

I have endure eleven years of this long, rough battle, and I am proud to say that I am still fighting and standing stronger than ever.

Most girls at the age of thirteen years old lose their innocence as they transition from a girl into a young lady during puberty, but little did I know I had another challenge in store for me the year I turned thirteen. Not only was I leaving my childhood behind and preparing myself to step into the world of womanhood, but I was also preparing myself to conquer the battle of my life--my battle with Scleroderma.

I was first diagnosed with localized scleroderma at the age of thirteen when my mom brought me to see my Pediatrician because of the unusual tightness in my hands. I didn't know how serious it was until my Pediatrician referred me to see a Dermatologist and Rheumatologist. It was after receiving the results from the countless number of tests that I had done, that the Rheumatologist confirmed that I did, in fact, have scleroderma. Just like any other patient concerned about their health, I did my research only to find even more dreadful news--there is no cure. Never did I think I'd be facing this battle at such a young age, especially when all odds were against me. Working hand in hand with Pediatric Specialist at the UCSF Medical Center, my doctors developed a plan to hinder and control my symptoms from getting worse, which composed high doses of various medications, monthly check ups, blood tests, CAT scans, X-rays, EKGs, pulmonary function tests, and long grueling hours of IV treatments. I have endure eleven years of this long, rough battle, and I am proud to say that I am still fighting and standing stronger than ever.

Living with scleroderma has shed another light on how I perceive and live life. It has taught me to become fearless, and has given me enough courage to overcome any challenge that I encounter in life and to never give up without a fight. It is because of my disease that I am interested in the healthcare field and I'm passionate about making a difference in people's lives. It grants me the opportunity to give back to those in need, just like all the doctors and nurses that gave back to me in my time of need

I don't see this disease as a burden, but more of a blessing because I learned to appreciate life for what it's worth, and to cherish every moment, good or bad. If I were given the chance to relive my life, I would go through this long, hard battle all over again because I wouldn't know what it's like to endure hardship, and if it wasn't for the hardship, I wouldn't know what its like to be a strong willed, optimistic, resilient, tenacious and determined individual.


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