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Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Bio

Several years ago, Maureen Pratt earned her Master of Fine Arts in Theater Arts/Playwriting from UCLA's School of Theater, FIlm and Television. She expected to be writing scripts. God had other plans.

A few years after her graduation, Maureen was diagnosed with a life-threatening case of organ-involved lupus. Her life turned upside down as she grappled with the effects of the illness and other health conditions that ensued. She was no stranger to serious health challenges; even as a child, Maureen had survived numerous bouts of pneumonia, flu, and other infections. But lupus made her take a fresh look at her life goals - and took herlifelong, strong Catholic Christian faith and writing in a direction she'd never imagined.

Today, Maureen writes and speaks about walking with the Lord while living with chronic pain and illness. She is the author of six books, including, "Peace in the Storm: Meditations on Chronic Pain & Illness" (Image Books/Randomhouse), "Beyond Pain: Job, Jesus, and Joy" (Twenty-Third Publications), "The First Year: Hypothyroidism, Second Edition" (Perseus) and "Taking Charge of Lupus: How to Manage the Disease and Make the Most of Your LIfe." She writes the syndicated column, "Living Well," for Catholic News Service, and has also written for Saint Anthony Messenger Magazine, Journey for Women Magazine, The Upper Room Magazine, LupusNow, and Arthritis Today. Maureen's health continues to be a challenge, however she feels honored to be able to bring her perspective, from experience and knowledge, to others.

"Good Days...Bad Days with Maureen Pratt" is a new way for Maureen to reach people who carry the burden of illness and pain in their lives, or who care for someone who does. Through the blog, she hopes to bring issues of health, wellness, and spirit into focus and, especially, inspire others that, no matter what health challenges, illness, or hardships they endure, each person can find a good way to realize the wonderful potential God has placed within each heart and soul.

Prayer for Disabled Veterans

posted by mpratt

Heavenly Father, during this weekend of Memorial Day, I lift up to you each man and woman who has given service to our nation, especially those who, because of their sacrifice, have returned disabled. Be with them in their darkest […]

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Illness: Is God Punishing You?

posted by mpratt

Early on in my journey with lupus, a Christian said to me, “You’re not cured because you’re not faithful enough.” When I challenged her on this, she said that she though God was punishing me for my “lack of belief!” […]

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Prayer for an Unknown Person

posted by mpratt

Dear Heavenly Father, Yesterday I saw a person who seemed troubled. We did not exchange a word, but I saw within weary eyes, a very weak light. I do not know what this person is enduring, nor do I have […]

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Lupus: Is Celebrating the Survivors Unrealistic?

posted by mpratt

I was once told by a person in a responsible position in a patient advocacy organization to “be positive, let them know that lupus isn’t all that bad. Don’t be negative.” The message this well-meaning person seemed to want was […]

Finding Something Good

posted by mpratt

A cheerful glance brings joy to the heart; Good news invigorates the bones. Proverbs 16:30 Whether personal or of the world, there is no lack of bad news feeding our lives and hearts. Of late, I’m facing a couple of […]

Lupus Awareness Day – Putting on the Purple

posted by mpratt

Lent is over. Advent is a long while away. But, today, I’m going to wear purposeful purple! May is Lupus Awareness Month, and today is Lupus Awareness Day, and the color is purple. Purple is a deep color, sometimes mysteriously […]

Fatigue and Friends

posted by mpratt

May is Lupus Awareness Month. For those of us with lupus, it might seem beside-the-point; it’s almost impossible to have lupus and not be aware of it each day, not only in May! I’m not going to go into “what […]

Why Centering Prayer Is So Important

posted by mpratt

If you’re like me, you find that your prayer list gets longer each day. World problems, individual petitions, personal prayers – we skip around this globe quite a lot when we sit down to have our quiet time with God. […]

Thank you, Mom!

posted by mpratt

We give flowers, gifts, meals. We make visits and phone calls. We hug them, help them, maybe even harmonize with them – remembering a lullaby or other song from our childhood. But, what can we say for all they’ve done […]

Prayer When You Hit a Dead End

posted by mpratt

Oh, Lord, I’ve been told that there is nothing that can be done, that I’ve run out of options, that I’ve hit a dead end. But I know that you, Lord, are endless, timeless, all-knowing and all-loving. I know, too, […]

A Moment with Meerkats

posted by mpratt

I’m forever marveling at the wonderful diversity of God’s creation, especially in the animal kingdom. Meerkats, in particular, are fascinating to me. They live very active, sometimes, frantic lives, taking care of life in their communities, dodging predators, searching for […]

Expressing Sorrow at Lost Health

posted by mpratt

It’s all right, now, this moment. You feel so very sorrowful that your health is lost. Everyone’s telling you to “be strong,” “have faith,” “be positive.” But all you feel like doing right now is crying. And, it’s all right, […]

Living with Heredity

posted by mpratt

Well, I’m nearly 15 years into my diagnosis of lupus, and “they” still don’t know what causes it, really. Sunlight can trigger it in some people, and certain medications can bring on drug-induced lupus. But beyond that, well, it’s pretty […]

When You Feel Like Going Back in Time

posted by mpratt

At some point during life with chronic illness, you feel like going back to the time “before.” Before your diagnosis. Before the disease or health condition took away so much of what you used to do and were. Maybe, at […]

The Miracle and Mystery of It All

posted by mpratt

It’s so easy to dwell on the pain, illness, and constraints that a chronic health condition imposes on us. So very easy, too, to think of what’s falling apart, what abilities are becoming (or have become) disabilities. But, here I […]

The Best Easter Ever Is Today

posted by mpratt

Oh, no, you might be thinking. Isn’t she a week or so off? Didn’t Easter already happen? Is she calendar-challenged? Not at all! I know that April 20 was Easter Sunday. But the best Easter is today. And tomorrow. And the […]

Sick People Are Easter People, Too!

posted by mpratt

Oh, my but some people have low expectations of us. They think that because we’re sick or in pain, we have to go around looking like we feel. Or, they hesitate to include us in enjoyable activities or allow us […]

A Prayer for Stewards of the Earth

posted by mpratt

Heavenly Father, the earth is Your creation, beautiful, vast, teeming with life, and constantly moving. We treasure this place, we are in awe of it, we find shelter here, and all that can sustain us. Help us, Lord, to know […]

Easter Monday: What Next?

posted by mpratt

A hoarse voice from all that praiseful singing, a stray foil wrapper without the chocolate egg, hosiery with the beginning of a run, achy joints from wearing Sunday-best shoes a little too long… It’s Easter Monday, and we’ve celebrated the […]

Hallelujah!!!

posted by mpratt

Well, praise the Lord in highest heaven, He is Risen! I hope you and your loved ones and church communities are enjoying a splendid Easter, with lots of love, light, and lilting music. Even if you think you have a […]

The Way and the Weight of Your Cross

posted by mpratt

Many times during Holy Week, I think about the way and the weight of the cross that Jesus bore to Calvary. Not only was it a monstrous thing – heavy and cumbersome. But Our Lord had been beaten, scourged, starved, […]

Sharing a Meal

posted by mpratt

Passover and Holy Week’s commemoration of the Last Supper make me think about how we prepare meals today, and how different it was in Jesus’ time. For one thing, the obvious: There were no drive-thrus or microwaves in Jesus’ day, […]

A Prayer for Centering in Holy Week

posted by mpratt

Lord, you are all great, all good, and I love you. But I am feeling pulled by cares, noise, and the ways of a worldly world. This week, of all times, please help me to center my thoughts and my […]

Is It Christian to Take Care of Yourself before Others?

posted by mpratt

We are fast approaching the most profoundly Christian time of the year, Holy Week and Easter, during which we will hear again about Jesus’ ultimate sacrifice, death on the cross, which redeemed us, washing away our sin and opening up […]

The Jewel within You

posted by mpratt

  Those beautiful baubles don’t start out as faceted jewels. Wrenched or blasted out of the ground, gem material (as it’s called) usually has a crust of other mineral material on it, often unattractive ore or dirt. Material that is […]

Can You Be a Peacemaker When You’re at War with Yourself?

posted by mpratt

  We all have heard the Beatitudes, and especially (no doubt) remember, “Blessed are the peacemakers…” In a world of trouble, violence, and anti-faith, this is a tall order!But there’s another thing that makes being a peacemaker in our world […]

Peace in the Storm

posted by mpratt

Nine years has gone by in a flash! April 19, 2005, my book, “Peace in the Storm: Meditations on Chronic Pain & Illness,” first appeared in bookstores. I remember holding my first copy, looking at the cover, and wondering, “What […]

Building up Strength

posted by mpratt

A friend about to undergo chemotherapy. An aging parent who is wobbly. You, terrified of the next doctor’s visit and what news you might get. Right now, there are many of us who are anticipating something that will require much […]

Done Something Foolish?

posted by mpratt

In honor of April Fool’s Day, some thoughts about those foolish moments – better known as “Ooops!” We’ve all had them. Those moments (or days, or months…) when we’ve known better, but still… We knew it would be better not to attend a social […]

Uprooted? Displaced? No more!

posted by mpratt

One of the most difficult things about a serious diagnosis is that it displaces us from our “life as we knew it” to a terrible, scary unknown world that, for many, has life or death consequences. Whether because of symptoms […]

Finding time for God

posted by mpratt

He’s with us every moment of our lives. In fact, He knew us before we were born. He knows what we do, think, and feel. And he knows what we pray for even before we ask. So how is it […]

The myth of closure

posted by mpratt

My heart goes out to all those touched by the loss of the Malaysian jetliner, which is said to have crashed into the Indian Ocean with all lives aboard lost. What agony the families and friends must be feeling, collectively […]

Blooming Time!

posted by mpratt

Not long ago, I posted a picture of my season-challenged Christmas cactus. It had bloomed at, when else, Christmas, but for some reason a few weeks ago began producing buds again! Just in time for…Lent?! As sometimes happens with plants, […]

A Prayer for the Restless Spirit

posted by mpratt

For all of you whose spirit is restless and waiting…   Lord, I’ve prayed for a cure, but none has come. I’ve prayed for understanding of “why,” and haven’t received that, either. I sit, stand, and wait, Lord, for your […]

Add a Little Spring!

posted by mpratt

Hallelujah! Today is the first day of Spring! Even if your neighborhood is still digging out from snow, or you have to wear heavy clothing just to go out to get the mail, rest assured, the calendar has spoken – […]

Bumps in the Road?

posted by mpratt

Go to the pharmacy for a 3-month supply of meds. Return home, look in bag, discover a 1-month supply. Phone Pharmacy. Go back to pharmacy for 2-month supply. Sigh! In a life with chronic illness and pain, there will inevitably […]

A Prayer for Quiet

posted by mpratt

Oh, Lord, there is so much noise in my heart and in my world.  It is becoming more difficult to hear you, to sense your presence in my life, to focus my spirit on what matters most. Please, Lord, here […]

Meaningful, mirthful minutia

posted by mpratt

In the elevator of my local grocery store, a mother and her young son were already waiting for the doors to close. As I stepped in, the boy, not more than three or four years old, stepped back, toward the […]

Clearing the air

posted by mpratt

A recent rain brought crisp, clean air to Southern California. What a blessing! Before the deluge, it seemed as if there was a pall of dust over and around. Now, it’s a joy to breathe deeply and enjoy the outdoor […]

It doesn’t matter when you bloom!

posted by mpratt

Feeling like life is passing you by because you’re limited by illness and pain? Do you believe you’re too old to try something new, achieve a dream, or simply shine brightly as a beloved child of God because your health […]

Happiness from the Outside, In

posted by mpratt

“Happiness is a by-product. You cannot pursue it by itself.”  Samuel Levenson, American humorist (1911-80) My page-a-day Old Farmer’s Almanac calendar often has pithy quotes that stir my thinking. The one above, on Thursday’s page, struck me as tremendously appropriate […]

Up to the test

posted by mpratt

The crucible for silver, and the furnace for gold, but the tester of hearts is the Lord Proverbs 17: 3   Living with illness and pain can seem like one, long, test. And, in many ways, it is. These challenges […]

Lent’s Call

posted by mpratt

Happy the people who know you, Lord, who walk in the radiance of your face.     Psalm 89:16   Happy Lent to you! Happy?  Lent? You might ask. Yes, a very happy Lent. Because we can feel a bit […]

Reminder: No Two Snowflakes Are Alike!

posted by mpratt

This was one of the first things I heard when I was diagnosed with lupus. “Lupies are like snowflakes – no two are alike.” It’s turned out to be a truly wise statement, in myriad ways. And it’s good to […]

Be gentle – to yourself

posted by mpratt

A friend and I were going to get together, but she ended up in bed with the flu.  She was “really, really sorry” that our plans couldn’t work out. But, “Be gentle to yourself,” I told her. All else can […]

Having a bad day? Cue the music

posted by mpratt

What is the soundtrack of your life? What songs lift you up? Make you want to move? Make you laugh? Make you cry? What songs do you take with you when you’re going to the doctor’s office? Or, having surgery? […]

Caring and not caring about what others think

posted by mpratt

Illness can be very ugly. Yes, it can be that horrible blot on our lives, and certainly change our appearance in undesirable ways.  And one of the hardest things to handle it is when we’re out in public – or […]

Spring will come

posted by mpratt

A dear friend of mine who also suffers from severe lupus is not a believer. Nevertheless, we share a very profound sense of faith that’s summed up by saying, “Spring will come.” Of course, from my perspective, the phrase relates […]

Never Enough

posted by mpratt

If you’re sick, in pain, and low, you might have heard yourself say, “I don’t have enough support.” or, “I don’t have enough money to get the care that I need.” or, even, “I don’t have enough energy/mobility/resources/hope to feel […]

One, Brief Window?

posted by mpratt

The weight of pain and illness, and the limitations these bring to daily life, can become excruciating, oppressive. But beneath the heavy burden of physical challenges is, often, a glimmer of light. Even if the door to wholeness and health […]

Hearing and Listening

posted by mpratt

“He just didn’t listen to the doctor,” she said to the paramedic as he opened the ambulance door. “He went out there and shoveled that snow anyway.” “I heard the doctor,” he said, lifting his head from the stretcher. “But […]

Love Inside, Love Outside

posted by mpratt

Happy Valentine’s Day! Despite the challenges we face, and the pain we endure, this is an uplifting day…and one for reflecting on the active, reflective effect of love on our world. What do I mean by that? I think especially […]

Even in Deep Winter

posted by mpratt

While driving along a frozen Midwestern road, I saw a startling sight. Despite the frigid temperatures and snow-covered landscape, a horse was grazing in a pasture! Much like this photo by prozac1/FreeDigitalPhotos.net, the horse seemed oblivious to the weather. Even […]

The Heart to Go On

posted by mpratt

One of the things that helps me most to move forward is to look back, to see where I’ve been. Many times haven’t been easy, and many situations have not had clear answers or resolutions. But I “in the now” […]

Dress for success

posted by mpratt

When those skimpy hospital gowns make you shudder, and the only “social” appointments you have entail going to a doctor’s office or pharmacy, there’s nothing like a little “dress for success” action to help motivate you and inspire others! It […]

The Daring Life We Lead

posted by mpratt

Driving home one afternoon, I stopped at a stop sign to wait for traffic to clear before proceeding. Across the street and to my left, a woman with a sight dog (seeing eye dog) waited, too. The dog stood by […]

Someone is waiting for you

posted by mpratt

February’s focus on Valentine’s Day can be difficult for many people who are isolated because of illness and pain. For some, even if they are surrounded by family and friends, they can feel lonely because of their physical limitations, depression, […]

The dust bunnies in our lives

posted by mpratt

Usually at the beginning of the year, I try to de-accession some of my possessions. This year, I made a very serious effort at figuring out what I had that I no longer needed that someone else could benefit from. […]

Willing to teach

posted by mpratt

A couple of blog posts ago, I wrote about how those people who are ill, infirm, or otherwise in need of care are not burdens on society but rather, they teach others to care. They also allow others to act […]

Just for fun

posted by mpratt

Today is the perfect day to do something just for fun. Actually, every day is perfect, but why not start today? Just because you have a chronic illness or just because my knees buckle doesn’t mean we are unworthy of […]

We teach others to care

posted by mpratt

Every time I hear or read about the “burden” that the ill, frail, and disabled place upon society, I want to scream. The reference is usually made in terms of the financial cost, but it can also be couched as […]

When you think you’ve had enough

posted by mpratt

There’s a curious thing that happens to many writers when they reach the middle of a particular project: They want to turn back, start a new project, or otherwise abandon their current work-in-progress because it seems to be completely fogged […]

You can be contagious!

posted by mpratt

Just as surely as we allow our bad days to make for bad moods and thus make for more isolation than relationships, so, too, on our good days, our lifted spirits can be the spark that makes for the ultimate […]

Lazarus and us

posted by mpratt

What a powerful story of love and God’s power is the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead! And what a blessing that, in Scripture, we have more than just a paragraph of the account. In John, for example, […]

A tip for rising above procrastination

posted by mpratt

Putting off something important? Waiting for the perfect moment before you take action on a step toward a goal? We all do it, of course. But what separates failures from successes? The ability to throw aside the tendency to procrastinate […]

Oh, that most difficult of questions: How are you?

posted by mpratt

It’s become a part of our greeting ritual, but it’s also one of the most difficult questions we face. “How are you?” Usually, there’s a perfunctory, “Fine. How are you?” And the answer to that one? “Fine, thanks.” And the […]

Your favorite football fan doesn’t get it? Now’s your chance!

posted by mpratt

I am not a football fan, but I know many people who are. And, in appreciation for their vast knowledge of all things football, I offer here a way for those of us who have chronic illness and pain to, […]

Stuck? Add a grace note

posted by mpratt

Even if you are not musically inclined, when you’re stuck in a rut, hole, or other foot-freezing, spirit-stunting space in your life, there’s nothing like adding a grace note to get you back on your purposeful path. What’s a grace […]

How do you react?

posted by mpratt

People can be so cruel. Recently, I was driving home and saw a person in a car nearly hit a pedestrian who was “of a certain age,” and moving more slowly than the impatient driver wanted her to. True, the […]

How can you set goals when they keep moving?

posted by mpratt

It’s slippery, skittish, and speedy – chronic illness can lie relatively quiet for a time and then pounce on you from seemingly nowhere. One day, one moment, you might be forging ahead on steps toward a goal: Tapering medication, finishing […]

Your Olympic season

posted by mpratt

If you read the title of this blog post and laughed, you’re not alone. Many people simply do not think of themselves as athletic, let alone Olympic caliber. But if you’ve lived awhile with the challenges of chronic illness and […]

That spark of something

posted by mpratt

Living with chronic illness often entails suffering tremendous losses. These blows to a fragile spirit can quickly lead to a dull, deep down feeling of hopelessness. You might ask, “Will my life ever mean anything, again?” or, “What’s the point […]

Signs of God’s Love

posted by mpratt

“Would you like some apple juice?” The nurse’s assistant was new to my doctor’s office, and I had only just met her. But as she helped the phlebotomist draw more than 11 tubes of blood from my arm, she could […]

Advent of a New Year

posted by mpratt

The period between New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day is short, but we do spend a lot of time thinking and wondering about it. For many, there is relief at seeing the “old” year go, and for some, anxiety […]

Please remember, you cannot fail Christmas!

posted by mpratt

It’s a couple of days after the holiday, a couple of days after we sang Noel and celebrated the birth of Our Lord. And, perhaps, as the leftovers are settled and the wrapping is dispatched, you might begin to feel […]

Christmas Dawns!

posted by mpratt

It doesn’t matter how much there is still left to do, nor how much will go undone.  It doesn’t matter that the Christmas cake is a little over-cooked, nor that the casserole doesn’t taste exactly like grandmother’s did. Ingredients omitted, […]

Sit Back. Listen

posted by mpratt

It’s crunch time, now. No matter how physically impaired you might be, if you’re looking forward to Christmas, you undoubtedly see a lot of “musts” in your path between now and December 24/25. Errand. Doc appointments. Visits. Travel, perhaps. Present […]

Winter Wonder-land

posted by mpratt

Didn’t it begin earlier? Winter, I mean. Snow has already blanketed much of the Northern Hemisphere, and cold temps have thrown many areas into a deep freeze. Yet, calendar-wise, winter has only begun on December 21. Makes me wonder if […]

Happiness in a Box?

posted by mpratt

I’ve had more doctor appointments than usual, lately, because of the episode with my eye. So, I’ve tried to “lighten” things up by finding bits of humor. I recommend this for any heart that is heavy with the burdens of […]

Chronic Illness: Teetering on Your Pedestal?

posted by mpratt

During holiday season, we come in contact with many more people than we usually do. In the course of our conversations, we probably talk about the health challenges we’ve endured throughout the year-almost-past (or, at least some of them).  And, […]

Active Peace

posted by mpratt

We’re almost halfway through Advent, nearly two weeks away from once again welcoming the Prince of Peace. How is your peace? Are you frazzled from all the activity of the Season, yet? Feeling buffeted by family squabbles that have a […]

Bringing Glad Tidings

posted by mpratt

The spirit of the Lord God is upon me,     because the Lord has anointed me; He has sent me to bring glad tidings to the lowly,     to heal the brokenhearted To proclaim liberty to the captives […]

Important to Remember

posted by mpratt

If my experience last week is any example, I was strongly reminded that illness does not go on a holiday during the holidays – and when things go awry, it’s important to seek the right help, even if it interferes […]

Derailed at Holiday Time?

posted by mpratt

Advent. Christmas. New Year’s. Every year, they come around once a year. And we plan carefully, putting activities into narrow windows, packing them into our schedules.But often, for those of us with chronic illness and pain, we can be derailed. […]

Chronic Illness and Pain: Holiday Budget Blues

posted by mpratt

A harsh reality of life with chronic illness and pain is that it is expensive both in terms of what it costs medically (doc visits, medications, etc.) and productively (perhaps you cannot work as much anymore, or at all and […]

Tips for the Caroling Coward

posted by mpratt

Are you the one who hangs back in the crowd, hoping that no one can hear you croak as others carol? Do you pretend to not be able to find the right page in the hymnal as others are singing […]

The greater the cheer, the greater the pain?

posted by mpratt

If you have felt great loss this year, or if your health challenges are weighing heavily upon your spirit and life, the “cheer” that accompanies this season can be particularly difficult to be around.  In fact, the great the cheer […]

A Different Kind of Advent

posted by mpratt

Prepare the way! Advent is here – four weeks of waiting and watching and listening…and doing all manner of things to get ready for Christmas.  Because Advent comes every year, we’ve probably memorized all of the Scripture readings, song lyrics, […]

Peace at home is peace at heart

posted by mpratt

Soft rain is pattering against the roof, punctuated by the occasional seagull screeching in flight.  The Christmas music is on. The tree is lit. It’s a fittingly quiet day after a very good Thanksgiving – and a blessedly peaceful one, […]

Chronic Illness and Pain: Camera Shy?

posted by mpratt

With apologies to the beloved Christmas tune, “It’s the most photographed time of the year!” From now until the New Year, millions, if not billions of pictures will be snapped. Hours and hours of video will be shot. And you, […]

Chronic Illness and Pain: Be Forkful!

posted by mpratt

Hold onto your waistlines! One of the most challenging parts of the holidays is eating, especially if you have a restricted diet to begin with. The temptations – “Just one cookie won’t hurt,” “You can always work it off afterward,” […]

Where Does It Hurt?

posted by mpratt

A couple of weeks ago, I gave a talk about “Spiritual Suffering” at a large medical center in Los Angeles. The topic came at the end of a difficult, yet grace-filled year – a great way for God to help […]

Prepping for the Holidays

posted by mpratt

Are you ready? Ready for the Holiday Season? Perhaps some of you are. But if you are more inclined to utter an “Oh, no!’ instead of an “Amen!”, I understand completely.  We’re never fully ready, are we? And if we […]

Caregivers of People with Alzheimer’s: Does It Matter What You Say?

posted by mpratt

I have heard from a few people with relatives in the last stages of Alzheimer’s, and some have asked, “Does it matter what you say?”  This seems to come up especially with regard to general conversation and prayer: With the […]

Prayer for Caregivers of People with Alzheimer’s Disease

posted by mpratt

Lord, I pray today for the people who care for men and women with Alzheimer’s disease. You know how hard their work is, how scant their resources, and how heavy their burdens. Perhaps tending to the needs of a stranger, […]

Alzheimer’s Foundation 2014 Candlelighting Event

posted by mpratt

The weekend of November 15-17, 2014, will again be the time when groups and individuals affected by Alzheimer’s disease may commemorate their and their loved ones’  journey through the Alzheimer’s Foundation National Candlelighting Event.   There will be events throughout […]

Feeling Like a Failure?

posted by mpratt

At some point in a life with chronic illness and pain, we feel as if we’ve failed. Failed at keeping healthier. Failed at following doctor’s orders. Failed at relationships. Failed at life. No matter how many reassurances we get from […]

Seeking a Mentor

posted by mpratt

When I was first diagnosed with lupus, I asked my doctor if she thought that joining a support group would be a good idea for me. She hesitated, then said, “No. There will be people who are depressed, negative, and […]

Alzheimer’s disease caregivers: What not to assume

posted by mpratt

As I  mentioned in a previous post, I am going to focus  this Alzheimer’s disease Awareness and Education Month on the role and work of the caregiver.  These amazing men and women (and some younger people) are in the trenches […]

How do you grow a good life?

posted by mpratt

So often, I hear people who have chronic illness say, “I want a life!” or “I don’t even have a life!” I understand what they mean. All of us experience that wrenching away from what we have enjoyed or found […]

All Saints…All Souls

posted by mpratt

This beginning of November combines many poignant things – celebrating the saints who have gone before us, many of whom lost their lives because of their faith, and commemorating the lives and passing of people closer to us, loved ones, […]

Who do you wish you were? And, why?

posted by mpratt

Even if you don’t celebrate Halloween, it’s hard to miss the identity changes that take place all around us (especially in Southern California). Adults become children, children become their favorite super-heroes. People open their doors to perfect strangers – and […]

Updating worn-out shoes

posted by mpratt

One of my most comfortable pair of shoes is just about worn out. This particular pair has been my go-to-when-I’m-out-and-about shoe for several years, and it’s been greatly helpful in terms of cushioning my steps and keeping me from experiencing […]

Finding Fitness Feats that Fit

posted by mpratt

Ah, exercise! Love it or hate it, most of us have heard our doctors tell us that it’s vital to overall wellbeing, not to mention our particular illnesses and/or pain.  But for many, that’s not exactly total motivation; that is, […]

Run, Run and then Collapse?

posted by mpratt

Today is the “day after.” And I’m preparing this blog in advance because I know exactly how I’m going to feel: Exhausted! I was asked to give a talk at a major medical center, and eagerly accepted the invitation. God […]

Science, Frogs, and Faith

posted by mpratt

I had such a good time on my interview on Relevant Radio’s “Morning Air with Sean Herriott” yesterday that I thought you might enjoy hearing the interview, too. What’s it about? Science, Frogs, and Faith! Click on the link and […]

Rooting for Team You!

posted by mpratt

This is a sports-centric time of year. College and professional football, the baseball World Series, end-of-season tennis tournaments and, soon, college and pro basketball. We could go hoarse cheering on our favorites! Of course, as with any socially-prominent trend, I […]

What If God Says, “No?”

posted by mpratt

For the past several weeks, Sundays have been the only days when I can truly rest. The rest of the days of these weeks have been jammed with doctor’s appointments, other responsibilities, and increasingly crushing fatigue. So, I’ve been observing […]

Our Time with God

posted by mpratt

If you knew that you were going to spend long days with a beloved friend, how would you want to pass the time? What sorts of things would you plan to do? Lots of outings, going to see the sights […]

Soft, but Strong

posted by mpratt

It was a day like any other – except I was having a terrible flare and could barely move. I had all of my meds, food, water, a book I could barely read because holding it hurt. But, what I […]

After Cancer, Then What?

posted by mpratt

Today, there is great hope for many people diagnosed with cancer. There are more survivors than ever before, thanks to early diagnostics and better and more effective treatments. We still have a long way to go, but ongoing commitments of […]

Brain fog and list-less?

posted by mpratt

Brain fog is one of the key maladies that can really frustrate, confound, and seriously crimp a day’s activities – it truly can feel as if the whole world around is shrouded in thick fog, making it hard to figure […]

Your Journey, Your Gift

posted by mpratt

Often, I hear people with serious chronic illness tell me that they feel so alone, so lost, and they don’t feel as if they have anything to give others. Illness has stripped them of their past careers, relationships, and even […]

How Do You Tell A Child that Mommy or Daddy Is Sick?

posted by mpratt

One of the most difficult things a parent will ever tell a child is that he or she, Mommy or Daddy, is sick. And not just “I have a cold” sick, but rather, “I am very sick.” Perhaps, at first, […]

When the Storms Don’t Come

posted by mpratt

I’ve heard that it is a particularly quiet hurricane season this year. There is a storm in the gulf (Tropical Storm Karen, I believe), that might cause substantial damage. But there has been nothing like last year’s catastrophe along the […]

On Harmony and Home

posted by mpratt

Chronic illness can truly affect dynamics at home. If a child is ill, other siblings might resent the attention that parents have to give to him or her. If a parent is ill, the other parent might have to do […]

Chronic Illness: Less Balance, Less Stress?

posted by mpratt

I wish I could remember where I heard it (lupus brain fog kicking in here), and if I ever do, I’ll be sure to give credit where it’s due…(and if you know where you heard, it please let me know!), […]

Chronic Pain: Own It, Then Put It in Perspective

posted by mpratt

Oh, how we wish we could just throw it away! Pains great and small, banish them to outer space and never take them back again. Yes, how we wish…but then, there’s how we feel and how we live. Pain still […]

Chronic Illness: The Next Generation

posted by mpratt

One of the most significant ways that our life with illness affects others is in providing guidance and influence over the next generation of patients, caregivers, and healthcare professionals. When I was first diagnosed with lupus, I didn’t consider this […]

Chronic Illness: When the Same Old Gets Old

posted by mpratt

Living and coping with a long-term illness often calls for establishing a routine. Meds have to be taken at certain times and with or without food or in certain combinations.  Symptoms need close monitoring. So much sleep. So much exercise. […]

Chronic Illness: Dare to Be You!

posted by mpratt

Most of us who live with chronic illness become very creative when it comes to coping. Perhaps we have an “alter ego,” in the shape of a stuffed teddy bear or other inanimate object, and vent our frustrations on it […]

On the Inside Looking Out

posted by mpratt

Just as churches seem to be placing even greater emphasis on “community,” I and many of my fellow chronic illness and pain sufferers are gearing up and going inside before colder weather and cold and flu season. Indeed, for some […]

The Essence of Coping with Chronic Illness Is a Strong and Willing Spirit

posted by mpratt

Do not stifle the Spirit. 1 Thessalonians 5:19 I cannot count the times that this simple sentence has resonated in my head and heart.  As we all know, life with chronic pain and illness can be wearing, tearing down our […]

What Season Are You In?

posted by mpratt

After nearly 15 years with lupus, I’ve come to realize that the journey with the disease moves along much like the seasons of the year. Spring, full of energy and promise and new things, is much like the early days […]

Chronic Illness: Sometimes It’s the Little Things…

posted by mpratt

Paper cuts, ear wax build up, a common cold, a brief bump against a table that bruises a leg. For many people, these things are inconveniences that pass quickly. Oh, but we who have chronic illness most probably know differently. […]

The Value of Being Put on Hold

posted by mpratt

If we took all of the minutes and hours that we’ve spent on hold, waiting to talk to someone on the telephone, waiting for test results, waiting for appointments in the doctor’s office…and we received even $.25 per minute, imagine […]

Ahead of the Holidays

posted by mpratt

Are you ready, yet? No, not for this weekend. Not for the rest of this month. Are you ready for the holidays? As I type this, my fatigue level is 100 on a scale of 1-10. And just as my […]

Inspiration for the Underdog

posted by mpratt

So often, when we’re battling symptoms or snags in our healthcare, or just having a bad day, we feel as if life is stacked up against us. Yes, we feel like the underdog, not favored to win or even, perhaps, […]

Chronic Illness: What Is Your Vocation?

posted by mpratt

)n this Labor Day weekend, as we relax and unwind, we might inevitably think about the work that we do and wonder what in the world it has to do with our overall, spiritual purpose in life. This might be […]

Rest for the Weary

posted by mpratt

I met up with a neighbor recently. I hardly ever see her because she’s always working. But on this day, she was dressed casually, carrying a department store shopping bag, and wearing a cautiously cheery smile. “Off today?’ I asked […]

Say What?

posted by mpratt

A kind mouth multiplies friends, and gracious lips prompt friendly greetings. Sirach 6:5 Some days, nothing seems to go right. More symptoms. More pain. Insurance snags. Money troubles. The roof leaks. The dog runs away.  No one answers your calls. […]

National Dog Day

posted by mpratt

August 26 has been named “National Dog Day,” and it’s a fine time to remember all the wonderful ways our furry friends enhance our lives, whether we have chronic pain and illness or not. I’ve known some remarkable dogs. There […]

Your Name In Illness and Pain

posted by mpratt

I’d just come from the dreaded fasting bloodwork and was standing in line at the local coffee shop. As people put in their orders and gave their names to the order taker, I marvelled at how exotic some of them […]

Are You Ever Sorry?

posted by mpratt

Chronic illness and pain are, well, pains to live with.  There are times when we’re angry, snappish, out of sorts. Sometimes, even if we’re at a happy celebration, our conditions can get in the way of feeling completely integrated into […]

Chronic Illness: A Special Home

posted by mpratt

With all the talk swirling around today about the housing and real estate market, I’ve been thinking a lot about what “home” means. For some, of course, it is considered an investment to be flipped at the swiftest and greatest […]

Supersizing Our Lives

posted by mpratt

On a walk recently, I passed by a recently-renovated neighorhood fast food restaurant. Emblazoned on the roof was a banner that invited all to try “our double drive-thru!” A “double drive-thru?” Hmm… Do we order in two parts? Order side-by-side […]

At the Whim of the Weather…Or Not

posted by mpratt

Periodically, I’ve delved into research about whether the weather affects people’s health. Some arthritis sufferers, for example, insist that their condition worsens as rain approaches, and some who suffer from depression often report that their mood is darker when the […]

See Jesus

posted by mpratt

In the Gospel of John, Chapter 6:16:21, we read about the storm on the sea. The disciples were out on the sea in a boat, and a terrible storm blew up. We read, “When they had rowed about three or […]

Is It Hard to Read the Signs?

posted by mpratt

One day, I noticed these signs on a street in a quiet residential neighborhood where, most days, little traffic flows. I couldnt’ resist taking a picture – such a complicated set of do’s and don’t’s when, I’d imagine, simplicity would […]

What Is Your ‘All?’

posted by mpratt

As we move into autumn and toward the holiday season, I’m already receiving solicitations for end-of-the-year donations. No doubt, more will be forthcoming, as well as requests for my participation in activities related various causes. Scripturally, we can find much […]

You Are Brave!

posted by mpratt

You might not have rushed into a burning building, or swam out to rescue someone drowning in choppy surf. But you have gone into the proverbial lion’s den – and you are brave! You live with chronic illness daily, pain […]

Can We Control Others’ Attitudes Toward Us?

posted by mpratt

When I was diagnosed with lupus, I lost many friends. Some simply did not undertand what chronic illness was all about, assumed I’d “get better” as soon as I was under a doctor’s care, and became impatient when the months stretched […]

Don’t Let Anyone Ruin Your Good Day!

posted by mpratt

We have all encountered the wet blanket. The person who seems to revel in stopping our good mood, or our good day, in its tracks. Perhaps the conversation goes something like this: “The sky is blue! Isn’t it lovely?” “See […]

Tempering Temper

posted by mpratt

When we’re angry, do we automatically feel we’re justified simply because we feel the anger? Or, could there be other reasons about which we might have some control? As summer heat matures, pressing down more harshly on certain parts of the […]

What Do You Let Go Of?

posted by mpratt

Chronic illness can lead to major changes in our lives, especially in our bodies. Weight gain or loss, skin tone alterations, hair loss or over-furry growth – these and other things can occur along the way and we have to […]

Illness on the Road Part Three

posted by mpratt

Home! Usually, at some point late in a vacation, your thoughts turn back to home. In some cases, you are having such a good time away that the thought of returning there is unpleasant. But often, we look forward to […]

What I Am Learning from Pope Francis

posted by mpratt

As I type this, I am watching the coverage from Rio, where Pope Francis is participating in the 28th World Youth Day. With amazing stamina and overt joy, the Holy Father seems to be throwing himself into all of his […]

Illness on the Road Part Two

posted by mpratt

You’ve arrived! You made it through the lines and long hours of travel, and now you’ve arrived at your vacation destination. How are you feeling? Exhausted? Good? Or, a combination of the two? Or, something else? When we take our […]

Illness on the Road Part One

posted by mpratt

Vacations can be relaxing, rejuvenating, exciting, and wonderful. But when you have a chronic illness, well, vacations can be something else entirely. As much as we wish it weren’t so, chronic illness doesn’t take a vacation. No matter how many […]

Too Soon? Too Late?

posted by mpratt

In the aftermath of life crises, loss, or a new diagnosis, people often tell us “take your time.” Indeed, we need time to digest what has happened and how it will affect our lives going forward. But we might also […]

“Have a great day!”

posted by mpratt

So, with three major life crises occurring within days of each other, and these having followed on the heels of a major lupus flare and significant medicine changes, I have a totally new perspective on that familiar throw-away line, “Have […]

Controlling the Uncontrollable

posted by mpratt

Ah! If only we could control our illness and pain! At least then we might be able to pick and choose the times and days when these awful challenges could stay in the background, corralled, quieted. But, unfortunately, much like […]

Living the Life of Job?

posted by mpratt

Perhaps one of the reasons so many of us with chronic illnes identify with the biblical tale of Job is that we have (or are) lived it (living it). Recent time has certainly been like that for me, not just […]

Chronic Illness: Letting Light Shine on Illness

posted by mpratt

When Moses parted the Red Sea and when Jesus walked the earth, people with illnesses were ostracized and thought to have something fundamentally, morally wrong with them. Consider the lepers, the blind, or those women who, for perhaps health-related reasons, […]

Chronic Illness and Pain: Go, Team!

posted by mpratt

We who live with chronic illness and pain are athletes in more ways than one. And rather than isolated athletes, running a solo race, we are actually part of a team that takes in ourselves, our loved ones, our doctors […]

Chronic Pain & Illness: Respect and Appreciation for the “Lowly”

posted by mpratt

Now more than ever, I realize how important it is to appreciate everyone who participates in our healthcare. Not only our doctors, but those who provide essential services that we sometimes overlook. In fact, it is the seemingly “least significant” of those people […]

Lupus: Coping Skills 4 and 5

posted by mpratt

How quickly May went by! Lupus Awareness Month is nearly over. Not so, unfortunately, the disease itself. No, it’ll be with us for quite some time, and thus my fourth and fifth “Lupus Coping Skills”: Adaptability and Creativity. These might […]

Live Long – Prepare Now

posted by mpratt

Over Memorial Day weekend, many of us catch up with family and friends. Invariably, we hear of (or meet up with) people who are in their supposedly “old” age, but who have enough energy and strength still to work, keep […]

Thank You to All Who Have Served and Who Serve Today

posted by mpratt

Your strength, courage, sacrifices, and determination shine through – and your service is deeply appreciated. Thank you to all who have served and who serve today – your willingness to face the bad days allows us to experience the good […]

Chronic Illness: Setting Boundaries or Building a Wall?

posted by mpratt

Fatigue is one of the most difficult things to cope with when living with chronic illness or pain. It can make even the most mundane activities seem impossible, and sometimes it can come on so suddenly that it stops you […]

Moore, Oklahoma, and Beyond

posted by mpratt

As many of us watched in real-time as the two-mile-wide behemoth of a tornado bore down on Moore, Oklahoma, yesterday, I was reminded of another night many years ago when I, a small child, my brother and parents hunkered down […]

Chronic Illness: What Do You Do with the Fatigue?

posted by mpratt

Premission to sleep! Chronic illness, whether lupus, fibromyalgia, MS, or another culprit, can bring on fatigue. Not just the “normal” kind brought on by a busy night or day, or strenuous exercise. No, our fatigue is usually called “unrestorative,” that […]

Lupus: Coping Skill # 3

posted by mpratt

The human spirit can endure a sick body, but who can bear it if the spirit is crushed?                  Proverbs 18:14, New Living Translation These few words from Proverbs say it all about the importance of a strong spirit when […]

Struggling to Have a Good Day?

posted by mpratt

Everybody’s happy! Everybody’s active! Everybody’s…NOT! When you don’t feel well, the struggle to make something, anything, good of a day can be exhausting and frustrating and, well, quite frankly, impossible. And yet, between those who say, “You have to have […]

Lupus: Relationships and Us

posted by mpratt

Last week, some friends of mine participated in a lupus event, and they invited me to come with them. I cannot tell you how wonderful it was to see their caring in action. Truly, the benefit of being enveloped by […]

Lupus: Coping Skill # 2

posted by mpratt

When I was diagnosed with lupus, I found it extremely helpful to immediately organize all the information, appointments, and other things pertaining to life with the diagnosis. That, then, was my “Coping Skill # 1.” Next, I set about finding […]

Chronic Illness and Pain: Are You Prepared?

posted by mpratt

I’m behind on my blog postings, again! Not because I didn’t want to put fingers to keyboard. Oh, no. Yesterday, the power in my neighborhood went out. Four times! My exercise consisted of walking around to reset my clocks – […]

Lupus: Getting Involved in Awareness Month

posted by mpratt

Before this Lupus Awareness Month gets too far underway, I wanted to highlight a few activities that will be taking place to educate, encourage, and raise funds for research. I realize that budgets can get stretched and energy sapped easily […]

Lupus Coping Skill: Number 1

posted by mpratt

When you are diagnosed with lupus, you have to absorb a lot of information in a brief period of time. Lupus is a very complex disease; even if your case is mild and you do not have to take any […]

Lupus: First Symptoms

posted by mpratt

The first significant symptom that I had that indicated something was seriously wrong was that my hair began coming out of my scalp in thick, cylindrical clumps, leaving behind smooth, round bald patches from which no further hair would grow. […]

Lupus: Why Is It Called “Lupus?”

posted by mpratt

One of the most confounding things for many people when they first hear the term lupus is, “Why is it called ‘lupus?’” The name doesn’t resonate with people today; it doesn’t seem to describe any kind of body part or […]

Lupus Awareness Month: For Starters

posted by mpratt

May is Lupus Awareness Month, and during this time, I’ll be blogging frequently about aspects of the disease, living with it, and coping with it. I realize my personal experience is unique; each person with lupus has his or her […]

Chronic Illness: Determined Adaptation

posted by mpratt

Never say “give up!” That’s one of my mottos for life with lupus. The flare that was stirred up after I had to go off one of my lupus meds has also made me extremely sun- and fluorescent light sensitive, […]

Chronic Illness: Riding Along

posted by mpratt

Several weeks ago, I learned that one of my lupus medications had begun to damage my retinas. I had to stop that medication immediately, but the hope was that I’d have some protection from it for up to a year, […]

Chronic Pain: Feeding the Soul

posted by mpratt

We all have our favorite comfort foods. For some, simple bread or a cup of herbal tea soothes. For others, a hearty, full-course, down home dinner does the trick. I keep chocolate handy, and also, of all things, relish (pardon […]

Chronic Illness: Find Your Spark Again!

posted by mpratt

Inside each of us, there is a light. But somedays, it seems as if that light has burnt out. When that happens in our homes or offices, we buy another and replace the old with the new. It’s not quite the […]

The Practical Patient: Medical Records and You

posted by mpratt

Throughout healthcare facilities large and small, offices are moving toward (or have already made it to) electronic records. This can be useful when it comes to coordinating care or having ready access to test results or emergency contact information. But, […]

Boston Then and Now: When Life Changes in an Instant

posted by mpratt

Everyone who ran, everyone who watched, indeed everyone who has heard of what happened in Boston on Monday will never forget. And those who were injured – emotionally or physically – will carry images, emotions, and perhaps physical reminders of […]

Chronic Illness: One Size (Often) Does Not Fit All

posted by mpratt

Have you ever had someone tell you you “must” do something for your illness, but your doctor has advised against it? Or, had someone say, “I know someone with [your illness], and he/she is really healthy.” [implying, “what’s wrong with […]

Chronic Illness: Taking Charge

posted by mpratt

The first book about chronic illness that I wrote, with rheumatologist David Hallegua, MD, was called “Taking Charge of Lupus: How to Manage the Disease and Make the Most of Your Life.” This was not the book’s original title; I’d […]

Chronic Illness: When the Future Is Unclear

posted by mpratt

When you’ve lived through the sharp flares and relative calms of chronic illness, you begin to understand that nothing is guaranteed. As I’ve experienced recently, sometimes the medications we take to keep some symptoms under control suddenly stop working or […]

Chronic Pain, Depression, and the Suicide of Pastor Rick Warren’s Son, Matthew

posted by mpratt

I am not an expert on depression. Lupus can cause it, or a lupus patient can certainly become depressed. But depression is not one of the conditions from which I have suffered throughout my life with serious illness. However, I […]

Chronic Illness: Finding “Peace in the Storm”

posted by mpratt

My book, “Peace in the Storm: Meditations on Chronic Pain & Illness” will celebrate 8 years in print this month! It’s been wonderful to see the book still find its audience: those who live with chronic pain and illness and […]

Chronic Pain: Easter Bunnies and Everyday Rabbits

posted by mpratt

I still enjoy the glow from a very good Easter. Good liturgies, good lessons, good weather, good fellowship, good food. Yup, it was all good. And it has truly put a smile in my heart, even two days removed from […]

Even with Pain, Even with Illness, Alleluia!

posted by mpratt

Holiday celebrations can sometimes be forced affairs. A date on a calendar is hardly reason of itself to raise spirits and feel emotions that the holiday evokes. Living with a serious illness or debilitating pain can certainly overshadow any “happy” […]

Chronic Pain: Good Friday and The Longest Walk

posted by mpratt

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Equ0RIiulOA There is a gospel song that resonates through my spirit on Good Friday. Simply named, “Calvary,” (I’ve linked one version of it that I found on YouTube, sung by Jami Jackson at the First Presbyterian Church of Brooklyn)  a traditional, […]

Chronic Illness: Our Bread and Wine

posted by mpratt

Sharing a meal with friends is a wonderful way to build fellowship, feel part of a social circle, and live wonderful occasions of love and care. For some, however, eating poses certain problems that might be mechanical (an esophagus that […]

Moments of “Holy” in Holy Week

posted by mpratt

Lent is almost over, and soon we will be raising our voices to celebrate Easter, the Resurrection of Our Lord, and a renewed sense of faith and optimism. In these last days of Lent 2013, I find myself doubling up […]

Palm Sunday for Us

posted by mpratt

In the Catholic Church, Palm Sunday is also Passion Sunday, and the gospel reading is about the Lord’s arrest, crucifixion and death on the cross. It is hard to hear about how Jesus suffered, and even harder to imagine someone […]

Chronic Pain and Downward Dog: Yoga in All of Us

posted by mpratt

So, I was rounding a corner to home after a morning of errands. My head was full of the rest of the day’s “to do” list. I was hurting, and the idea of a nap did flit through my head. But […]

Chronic Illness: Bathing Suit Season and Us

posted by mpratt

I saw it the other day. Had to blink and clear my eyes to make sure I’d seen correctly. Yup. It was there. Plain as these springtime-lengthened days. What was it? An advertisement for bathing suits. What is a lupus […]

Chronic Illness: We May Be Suffering, We May Be Down, But We Are Strong!

posted by mpratt

Throughout history, the suffering patient has had an uneasy role in society. In biblical times, lepers, the blind, the lame, and other ill or physically challenged people were often ostracized and thought to be or inhabited by evil. Moving toward […]

Chronic Pain: Bad Day, Bad Mood, Better Response

posted by mpratt

We’ve all done it – and probably felt even worse afterward. Done what? Taken out our frustration and anger about our pain on ourselves or someone else. The physical weight of the pain coupled with the ever-growing sense of being […]

Chronic Illness and Pain: What Does It Take for You to Bloom?

posted by mpratt

Today, the African violet leaves that I planted back in June of 2012 are bearing beautiful blooms! Not just ones and twos, but many of the plantlets have grown and are putting forth colorful flowers. The splashes of magenta, purple, […]

Chronic Illness: Worried?

posted by mpratt

I’m embarking on a new leg of my journey with lupus, after learning that one of the medications I’ve been taking for a long while is causing damage to my retinas. The next year will be, to say the least, […]

Chronic Illness: Seeking Answers

posted by mpratt

The process of getting a diagnosis for some illnesses can be fairly straightforward. But for some it can take years of testing and perseverance. Some lupus patients I know went 5+ years before their doctors determined the reason for their […]

Chronic Illness: When We Don’t Know What’s to Come

posted by mpratt

Yesterday was a tough doctor day for me. I had to have retests of my retinas for a problem that may or may not be related to one of the medications I take to treat lupus and keep it (moderately) […]

Chronic Pain: Why Isn’t Everyone Cured?

posted by mpratt

When I heard the news story today about the Mississippi child who was born with HIV and now, 2 1/2 years later, seems to be cured, I was very happy for researchers and others who have been working in the […]

Chronic Illness: How to Handle the Snowball

posted by mpratt

Whenever someone visits or lives in a place where snow has recently fallen, I ask them to “throw a snowball for me.” It was one of my favorite things to do, when I lived in blizzard-prone places, and I still […]

Heart Health: Great Things!

posted by mpratt

I am constantly amazed by the great strides researchers in all aspects of medicine are making to identify, diagnose and treat heart problems. From ethical research focused on using an adult’s own cardiac stem cells to regenerate heart tissue that […]

Previous Posts

It Doesn't Take Much to Care
Martyrs and missionaries make astounding sacrifices each day to bring the Gospel and God's love to others. They commit themselves to monumental tasks, knowing that they are giving their lives over to serving and, sometimes, dying for others and ...

posted 7:34:08pm Jun. 27, 2015 | read full post »

Chronic Illness and Pain: Discerning Who to Tell What
As we journey through our lives with chronic pain and illness, we undoubtedly will come across people who ask us "How are you?" Some are truly caring and want to be empathetic and/or reach out with help. Others are being polite, but might not be ...

posted 7:21:50pm Jun. 24, 2015 | read full post »

Chronic Pain: Freshening up the Daily Routine
Like many of you, my days begin with much of the same routine, mostly involving health activity. Stretching, medications, setting up for the day ahead (sun protective clothing or not?) - it can feel as if each day begins with the same old thing. ...

posted 1:16:47am Jun. 23, 2015 | read full post »

Happy Father's Day!
A very happy Father's Day to all fathers - those who are related through blood and those who act as fathers to all of us! Your strength, patience, creativity, and care are truly appreciated - and I hope that this day brings you much joy and ...

posted 7:21:21pm Jun. 21, 2015 | read full post »

TLC Tuesday: A Little Attention
When we consider all of the things we must do each day, we might quickly become overwhelmed. Large tasks - doctor's appointments, job interviews, school finals, for example - and smaller ones - grocery shopping, laundry, feeding the pets - can ...

posted 10:06:01pm Jun. 15, 2015 | read full post »

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