“It all started the day I went to open my toothpaste. My finger locked and I couldn’t even get it open.” – Brelyn Michele Clover (the first line from my new book, Battling Brelyn)
My new young adult series touches on a lot of themes that I believe many of us face today. The one theme that is essential to the book is that of Lupus. My main character, Brelyn Clover, is diagnosed with Lupus at the beginning of Battling Brelyn (the first book in the series). As a teenage girl who loves health and fitness, you can imagine how hard this blow is for her.
May is Lupus awareness month. Even though the month is over, the fight for Lupus will never be over. I felt compelled to write a story about a character with Lupus because I believe this disease affects more people than society may realize. I’ve had friends and friends of family members that have been diagnosed with Lupus. Some have battled with it for years. I also lost an aunt to Lupus.
When I first got the idea, I had no clue where the story would go. Three years later, after outlining, working on the character bible and making sure the pieces were in place, the story was finally completed last month. Reading it over during a month where many organizations, namely Lupus.org, are bringing more awareness to the disease, I realized one thing – it’s such an important time for everyone to understand the impacts of Lupus and how you can support a family member or friend dealing with it.
One key thing that stands out in Battling Brelyn – her family never left her side during times where she was confined to the hospital or to her room. They banded together, even when there was tension between them. Support can be anything from prayer, to keeping a loved one company, to giving an encouraging word – or even sneaking them an occasional milkshake (which Brelyn’s older brother does for her) – anything to see a smile on their face.
The important thing is to help them with whatever they need to stay healthy and take their doctors orders seriously. Either way you support, just know the fight for Lupus has only just begun. For those who don’t understand what it is, how it affects the body or how you can support, visit www.lupus.org for more information.
To sign up for exclusive first chapter excerpts from my upcoming series, The Clover Chronicles, click here.