GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Next week, the Coast will come together walking to bring awareness to lupus, a serious autoimmune disease that affects more than 1.5 million Americans.
Lupus can affect anyone, but it’s most often diagnosed in women. The body’s immune system becomes hyperactive and attacks normal, healthy tissue and cells by mistake.
One Gulfport mother works hard to keep her family’s life as normal as possible while learning to cope with the debilitating effects of the disease.
Carly Goldin stays busy keeping up with her two little ones.
“We have to get ready for taekwondo,” Goldin says to her children.
She loves staying active with them, but that’s not always easy living with lupus.
“I feel tired a lot. But I constantly feel the need to prove to myself that I can still live my life,” she explained.
Goldin was diagnosed three years ago shortly after the birth of her youngest son.
“My six year old is very calm and quiet, but my 3 year old is all over the place,” she said.
And while she’s determined to keep up with them, it’s not easy.
″Lupus can affect so many systems of your body. It can affect your skin, organs, joints, blood cells," explained the mother.
Her disease is always changing, making everyday life challenging.
“Getting on and off the floor is hard. I have pelvic pain. Just pulling up their pants, there’s weakness in my arms and pain that’s definitely noticeable,” Goldin explained.
But she manages to smile through it, saying attitude is everything. Still some days are harder than others.
“I’m human. I have days. It’s hard to process my emotions and come to terms with what’s going on. It’s hard not to think about the potential progression of the disease, and what that means for my future and wanting to be there for those milestones for my kids,” she said.
And because of that she says she’ll keep pushing herself to do the things she wants and needs to do.
“It’s hard not to let something that affects you every day not to let that define you. It’s a new part of your life,” she said.
Goldin hopes the upcoming walk will bring awareness to the disease and help bring lupus patients together.
The Walk the Loop for Lupus event is at 3 p.m. May 5th at the Goldin Sportsplex on Prudie Circle in Gulfport.