Advertisement

Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Lupus Archives

A Praying Spirit: When You Don’t Feel Like Praying

posted by mpratt

Perhaps you’re tired. Bone-weary. Angry. Deeply torn. Spiritually dry. Perhaps it’s taken a long time to admit it, but now you do. You don’t feel like praying. Are you a bad person? Sinning for saying it? Hopelessly lost? Not at […]

Advertisement

Just Because

posted by mpratt

Today’s a great day to encourage yourself and others…just because. So often, we wait to express our appreciation, admiration, or pleasure to someone else. It might be a spouse who lives alongside of us, or it might be someone we […]

Advertisement

Food for Thought: What You Hear in Silence

posted by mpratt

We can learn much, when we cultivate silence. It might seem counter-intuitive; our learning usually takes the form of words or pictures or sounds, tangible things that have size, depth, tone, and space. But beyond all of those things that […]

Advertisement

A Day-full of Devotionals?

posted by mpratt

It’s been building up over the past few years, but this year, it seems to truly be turning into a swift and powerful waterfall – it’s the number of devotionals available to us, especially those to observe during Lent! And […]

Hope for Chronically Ill Teens

posted by mpratt

As a teenager, it seemed as if I was always getting sick. “Regular” things, like colds and flu, and “Really Wierd Illnesses” that, in hindsight, were probably manifestations and flares of the lupus I would later learn that I have. […]

TLC Tuesday: Learning to Laugh – At Ourselves!

posted by mpratt

There’s no way around it – if we want to be happier, we have to laugh more. And the best way to start is with ourselves! Over the past few years, I’ve watched the body of research around the health […]

A Praying Spirit: Holding Fast to Prayer Time

posted by mpratt

I really admire people who can get up each morning and immediately embark on deep prayer. Or, those who, no matter what, reserve a specific time later in the day for prayer – no matter where they are or what […]

Chronic Pain: Catching Your Breath on the Roller Coaster Ride

posted by mpratt

It isn’t often that we get a lull in the “medical” action during our lives with chronic pain. In fact, such moments, brief or long, might take us by complete suprise – and we don’t fully realize them until they’re […]

Chronic Pain and Illness: How We Do It All

posted by mpratt

When I talk with people about what I do, their response is frequently, “How do you fit it all into a day?” My response, generally, is, “I don’t.” The concept of “a day” is very different for those of us […]

Chronic Illness: A Disability Doesn’t Equal Immaturity

posted by mpratt

I was on a call the other day, trying to make sense of error messages spewed forth by my computer (I eventually learned that the hard drive had died…another story entirely!). The connection was really, really bad and the person […]

Chronic Illness: Recycling God’s Love

posted by mpratt

It was shortly after January 1, and I was feeling frazzled after a long round of errands. Traffic was thick and so were the crowds inside the stores once I got into them. But perhaps most irritating were the old […]

TLC Tuesday: Strengthen Your Weakness

posted by mpratt

We try to hide them, deny them, and, when we cannot ignore them, we try to get away from them as quickly as possible. They are our weaknesses, and many of us may find them so very embarrassing that these […]

TLC Tuesday: If You’re Working through the Holidays

posted by mpratt

So often, we hear about “holidays” and “vacations” in the same breath that we forget that so many people might not be so fortunate as to have time off this week or next. There are the obvious workers : the […]

Chronic Illness: The Gift You Give

posted by mpratt

If medical expenses and life in general is sapping your ability to be a major gift-giver, take heart – and give it back! Yes, it isn’t too late to lavish your family and friends, and even members of your medical […]

Chronic Illness: Too Tired Too Soon?

posted by mpratt

Wow, I am behind. Behind in decorating, doing, and all else having to do with the holidays.  Too soon this Season, I’m feeling that bone-deep fatigue that comes with lupus, anemia (just found out about that), and activity.  Steer me […]

Food for Thought: Revisiting Rudolph

posted by mpratt

I feel a particular affinity for Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, especially the claymation television special. It aired for the first time 50 years ago and has been a favorite for millions since. I even have a Christmas tree ornament depicting […]

Food for Thought: The Theory of Everything, Part Two

posted by mpratt

The movie, “The Theory of Everything,” about the early and mid-lives of Stephen Hawking and his wife, Jane, stirs up a lot of discussion about love, commitment, and life, especially marriage, where one spouse has a serious, life-altering, illness. As […]

Food for Thought: The Theory of Everything, Part One

posted by mpratt

Movies can be tremendous entertainment, taking us out of our ordinary lives into an extraordinary world of storytelling. But sometimes, movies strike so close to home that they set off a cascade of thoughts, feelings, and questions. I recently say […]

TLC Tuesday: Give Yourself 15 Minutes!

posted by mpratt

Lights! Camera! Action! Today, TLC Tuesday, give yourself 15 minutes – 15 minutes, that is, of time during which you report on and spotlight all of the things you’re doing right. Don’t let one, single, negative action or word creep […]

Chronic Illness: Too Many Moving Parts? Here’s Help!

posted by mpratt

  This doc wants bloodwork and so does that doc, but the appointments aren’t on the same day, so you end up with 2 sticks instead of one. Then, the first doc needs more blood and another test, and a […]

Chronic Illness: Worship and Contagion

posted by mpratt

My immune system is, once again, in overdrive and making new and serious antibodies, among them to my retinas. I’ve had to begin a more aggressive form of treatment, and it will make me more susceptible to infection. As a […]

TLC Tuesday: Banish the Guilt!

posted by mpratt

You have to rest, you have to take care…but your stomach cringes and you find yourself close to criticizing yourself for being lazy…Please, dear friend, banish the guilt! Yes, at times, you might feel guilty that you are taking care […]

Chronic Pain: A Goodness within You

posted by mpratt

Pain is like a very nasty weed. Its roots run deep, its leaves spread wide and block out light. It can take over and make all things good seem distant, unreachable. But just as pain is within, so, too, is […]

Refreshing Exercise

posted by mpratt

True confession: I was never fond of exercise. In fact, I used every excuse not to exercise way back in high school. Now, of course, I understand the benefits much better than I did then, and I also like exercising – […]

Chronic Pain: Lost and Found

posted by mpratt

Somewhere, amid the pain and the frustration we feel over lost health and today’s health trials, there are bright, uplifting memories we’ve lost track of, times when life was easier or days when we heard and enjoyed laughter, did good […]

Prayer for Grace-full Aging

posted by mpratt

Whether your day has passed or is coming up, we all will age one more year this year and onward. We cannot turn back the clock, but we can turn on grace as we move ahead. Here’s a prayer for […]

Wear is your best?

posted by mpratt

“Why don’t you wear that lovely ewelry/that dress/those shoes more often? “Oh, it’s too good to wear everyday. I only save it for special occasions.” “So, when was the last time you wore it?” “Oh, it’s been so long, I can’t […]

Writing about chronic illness and pain

posted by mpratt

Frequently, people will tell me that they want to write a book about their experience with chronic illness and pain. When they ask me for advice, I give them a response that’s probably not what they’re expecting. Instead of talking […]

Giving when you think you don’t have anything to give

posted by mpratt

I understand the Scriptural basis for tithing and giving monetarily to church and charitable causes. I know, clearly, the story of the widow who gave her precious coin to the Temple. But the truth is that, today, living with a […]

Chronic Illness: Managing the Munchies

posted by mpratt

I really, really, really like chocolate. Chocolate and almonds. Or, just chocolate. And yet, I know how bad it can be if I over-indulge. Extra weight on lupus-arthritic joints can add pain on top of pain. So, I try to […]

Chronic Illness: Managing the Usual with the Unusual

posted by mpratt

I’m typing this with a sore arm and a couple of month’s journey – again – to determine “once and for all” the reason why I don’t hold onto iron. For years, I’ve dealt with iron levels that get lower […]

Chronic Illness: Faith and the Future

posted by mpratt

Fifty years ago, or perhaps even less, someone with a diagnosis of lupus could not expect a “normal”  lifespan. There was so little understanding of the disease, and few ways to treat the symptoms and flares, proctively or otherwise. Today […]

Chronic illness: If you think you cannot believe

posted by mpratt

I’ve said many times that I cannot imagine facing my health challenges without faith. Many other people I know feel the same way; they rely on God throughout every trial, and every praiseful moment, too. But, what if you cannot […]

Under the eyes of a watchful, loving God

posted by mpratt

So often I hear one or more people living with illness or pain say, “Why did God let this happen?” As many of you probably already know, I tend to take an “illness is neither bad nor good, it just […]

Coping with chronic illlness: Sorting it all out

posted by mpratt

Living with chronic illness is hard, but sorting through all the symptoms to communicate with our doctors can be even tougher, sometimes. For example, perhaps you feel tired. Is it the same kind of tired as when your illness flares? […]

Chronic Pain: Many ways to say, “Hallelujah!”

posted by mpratt

Sometimes, praising God is tough. Physical pain can make it impossible to lift a limb, let alone raise hands to heaven. Emotions might be anything other than joy-filled. And spirits can sag, especially as life with chronic pain goes on […]

Living with chronic illness: How do you respond to the world?

posted by mpratt

No doubt about it, there are lots of problems in our world. Close to home and far away, the news of the day is full of strife, violence, awful issues, and injustices. But even closer to home is your and […]

A Beautiful Flag Day to You!

posted by mpratt

I’m not much for awareness ribbons. There are so many of them, now, and of so many different colors, that I’m at sea as to which is which. I am, however, very appreciative of the flag, particularly the flag of […]

Lupus: One thing after another

posted by mpratt

It’s hard for many people to understand the “whack-a-mole”-like life that is life with lupus. There are some lupies among us with relatively mild disease and for whom some treatment provides longer-term relief. But there are some of us…Well, it’s […]

Stress buster: A thankful spirit

posted by mpratt

How often do you give thanks each day? I try to sprinkle liberal doses of thanks throughout mine. And, besides the obvious – that thanks is a prayer to God that I am grateful for even the smallest thing in my […]

Chronic Pain Coping: Naming Your Pain

posted by mpratt

Okay, I confess to a bit of juvenile fun. Plants, fish, even the hummingbird that visits each year – I have a name for them all. Even if it is “Silly” or “Birdie,” each flitting, swimming, and growing thing gets […]

Stress buster: Tips for those long waits in doctors’ offices

posted by mpratt

Oooh, they’re getting longer, not shorter, those waits in doctors’ offices. And, if you’ve exhausted all those rat-eared magazines and examined drab artwork long enough, you’re probably feeling impatient, patient. Edgy, perhaps. Or, even angry. But, wait! (as if you […]

Wisdom from Romans

posted by mpratt

Do not conform yourself to this age but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and pleasing and perfect. —Romans 12:2 Sometimes, don’t you just feel […]

Living Lupus: Summer in the Sun (Not!)

posted by mpratt

One of the things that can be very damaging to lupus patients is something that many people are already enjoying to the hilt in the early summertime: Basking in the glow and warmth of the sun. Unfortunately for many of […]

Chronic Illness: Developing a Fighting Spirit

posted by mpratt

Oh, my word, another diagnosis. Just when I thought I’d “collected the whole set” of lupus-related, autoimmune illnesses, I’ve been given another. And with it is another medication, monitoring by another specialist, and all the other things that go with […]

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!” […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 – […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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, […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 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. […]

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 […]

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. […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

“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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 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 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 […]

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 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 […]

Chronic Illness: You Do Not Have to Do It All

posted by mpratt

Calling all multi-tasking, over-stressed, well-intentioned people with chronic illness! (and I mean myself, too): You do not have to do it all. Not even if the nicest person from church calls you to ask you a “favor” because he/she knows […]

Chronic Illness: Taking Our Time

posted by mpratt

In one of my first blogs, I shared a picture of an African violet that I grew from a single leaf. It had just bloomed for the first time, only a few months after the leaf cutting was taken. That […]

Chronic Illness: Not Impolite, Just Prudent

posted by mpratt

Sometimes, moving about in public resembles running a gauntlet of things unhealthful. Smokers. Angry drivers. Sick people sneezing and coughing freely. Dodging these perils can be nearly impossible – but imperative, if we with chronic illness want to keep our […]

Chronic Illness: Retiring the Blame Game

posted by mpratt

“I got this from my father’s side.” “She couldn’t have gotten it from my side of the family.” “I shouldn’t have smoked three packs a day. “If only I’d exercised more, this would have never happened.” The blame game abounds […]

Chronic Illness: Steering the ‘Type A’ in All of Us

posted by mpratt

I’ve heard many lupus patients say, over the course of time in which I’ve spoken with patient groups, that many of us were and still are “Type A” personalities. The ones who did it all. The ones who would take […]

Permission to Sleep

posted by mpratt

Want to make your good day even better? Give yourself permission to sleep! Before my lupus diagnosis, I overslept my alarm, steeled myself from taking naps that I craved, and felt guilty because I was so very, very fatigued. When […]

Previous Posts

A Praying Spirit: When You Don't Feel Like Praying
Perhaps you're tired. Bone-weary. Angry. Deeply torn. Spiritually dry. Perhaps it's taken a long time to admit it, but now you do. You don't feel like praying. Are you a bad person? Sinning for saying it? Hopelessly lost? Not at all. God still and always will love you, and He knows how d

posted 10:58:26pm Mar. 21, 2015 | read full post »

Just Because
Today's a great day to encourage yourself and others...just because. So often, we wait to express our appreciation, admiration, or pleasure to someone else. It might be a

posted 10:41:02pm Mar. 19, 2015 | read full post »

TLC Tuesday: All About Us
Happy St. Patrick's Day! I hope that, if you celebrate today, you will have a fond and festive time. Any kind of holiday centered on a particular race or ethnicity makes me think of what makes us us. I also think about this when I hear of genetic studies and how scientists are trying to identify

posted 10:48:38pm Mar. 17, 2015 | read full post »

Food for Thought: Participatory Humor
The old saying goes, "Laughter is contagious," and so often, we discover that's true. Someone in a meeting starts to giggle. He or she happens to glance over at a coworker,

posted 10:23:39pm Mar. 16, 2015 | read full post »

A Praying Spirit: Pray It Aloud
Today, we think of it as speaking in our regular tone and volume, but did you know that an archaic meaning for the word "aloud" is "singing with joy?"  For this post, I'd li

posted 10:16:52pm Mar. 14, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.