As someone born with the sickle cell gene, I know a great deal about the disease. I know a lot about going in and out of hospital, as well as how to stay out of it as one gets older. Sincerely speaking, life has not been easy, but I am proud of my achievements.
I am sure that if you were diagnosed with sickle cell anaemia at a young age, you would not expect to live long. This is because you would have been informed that you possibly had a short time to live. Unfortunately, that has been the case for many people afflicted with sickle cell anaemia over the years.
I want to tell those who are living with the disorder that, as painful as it may be, life is still worth living. For this reason, it is important to take good care of yourself or to find somebody who will look after you as long as you have the disorder.
Mothers who really love and care for their children from the moment they were diagnosed with the disorder do an incredible job. I remember my mum would ‘force’ me to eat what is ‘good for me’. The fact that she was a nurse also helped. Five decades down the line, I have become a fussy and picky eater, thanks, mum.
The social stigma that sickle cell anaemia attracts on our continent is inexcusable. Sickle cell is not the same as HIV/AIDS. Even those people with HIV no longer have a death sentence hanging over them. So, why are people in the 21st century discriminating against a sickle cell patient? It is totally out of order and unfair.
Here you have someone who is already vulnerable due to ill health and then someone will say, ‘I can’t marry you’, just because you are a sickler’. Really? We can do better and embrace diversity, as that is what makes the world a wonderful place.
Or bosses, employers discriminate against people with Sickle cell because they are off work a lot. And that is why I would encourage you to think about the business that you can start on your own. Be your own understanding boss. You have a lot to offer with your talents, even with Sickle cell.
My articles will focus on how you can enjoy your life and eat nourishing meals, despite living with sickle cell anaemia. I am for eating well and eating good food that is nutritious and will help me stay out of hospital, as well as to prevent the sickle-shaped blood cells in my body from clotting.
This post is about the choice of lifestyle that most people make, especially when it comes to living a better and fulfilled life. My plan to educate and inform you of the food, drinks, herbs, spices, drinks and lifestyle choices that can make a difference in the life of a person living with the disease.
I will be talking about the various considerations that one needs to have when living with sickle cell anaemia. Also, I plan to talk about the challenges that I have faced as a person living with the disorder.
If you are living with the disorder, then you should know how to look after yourself. Always keep warm, don’t over stretch yourself, eat well and drink plenty of fluid, preferably water, in order to keep your blood cells moving and not clotting. Most important, try and walk away from stress. Sickle cell patients cannot handle too much stress. If you are tired, give yourself the rest that your body needs.
I have worked in the media for over 20 years. Although I have fallen ill a number of times, not once has it occurred to me to stop work and stay home because of sickle cell anaemia.
Most people find it hard to believe that I suffer from sickle cell anaemia until I fall ill in a very ugly way. If you are one of the people with the disorder, then you know what I am talking about. If someone that is close to you is living with the disorder, then you know what I mean.
Yes, there will be tough times but don’t let that stop you from achieving your goals because Sickle cell disease is not a death sentence.