Friday, October 14, 2005

A Public (& Family) Service Announcement

At the risk of revealing my "secret" identity to the two people in my life who don't already know I have this blog, I would like to pass along an e-mail my Kid Sister sent me last week:

I know with the trauma and tragedy of Hurricane Katrina that many have been reaching into their wallets to make donations to those in need. Justin and I are asking you to consider making one more this year.

We recently registered for the 2005 Washington, D.C. Walk with Us to Cure Lupus Walkathon, which will be held on Saturday, November 5th. 100% of the proceeds from this event will support the Alliance for Lupus Research (ALR) in its efforts to prevent, treat and cure lupus. This is our fourth year participating, and each year we are proud to raise more funds and see the walk get bigger and better.

Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease in which a person's immune system mistakenly attacks the body's own tissue. It can cause life-threatening damage to major organs such as the kidneys, lungs, heart and central nervous system. Women are five times more likely to die from lupus than men, and African Americans are three times more likely to die from lupus than caucasians.

As many of you know, my own personal battle with lupus started eight years ago. My joint pain and fatigue have become fairly stable, but I still live in fear that the kidney disease will progress to the next level, leading to dialysis or the necessity for a transplant. While I am fortunate enough to lead a fairly normal life, many with lupus are not so fortunate. At our kick-off luncheon this year, a woman spoke tearfully about the death of an 11 year old member of her Girl Scout Troop, and how she had never heard of the disease until Ani was diagnosed. A friend of mine upon learning that I had lupus, went on to tell me about how complications from lupus were the cause of her mother's death, and that her aunt also had the disease. She is considered at higher risk because of that.

Your generous support will help me reach our fundraising goal of $1500, and is essential to the ALR's research program. More information on the Alliance for Lupus Research can be found at

It is faster and easier than ever to give your support; you can donate online by simply clicking on one of the links to our personal web pages at the bottom of this message. Immediately after making your gift, you will receive an email with tax receipt information.

Whatever you can give will help; it all adds up! I greatly appreciate your support and will keep you updated on my progress.

Please forward this message to anyone you think would like to support me as I Walk to Cure Lupus!

To make things even more interesting this year, we are having a sweepstakes with some really fantastic prizes. Tickets are ten dollars apiece, and 100% of the funds (just like a regular donation) go entirely to lupus research!* If you are interested in the sweepstakes tickets, fill out the information and mail it with your check to the address listed on the sweepstakes form. Please write walker ID No. DC-70193 (Justin) or DC-70057 (Sherry) on any checks mailed in for the sweepstakes. Checks and sweepstakes entry must be received by October 30 to qualify for the sweepstakes.

Finally, if anyone is interested in walking with us, we welcome everyone! We currently have ten walkers for the team, which will be the most we've ever had, but it is definitely a case of the more the merrier!
[Sherry & Justin are walking in the Washington, DC area. If you would like direct contact information for them, please contact me.]

Thanks so much for anything that you are able to do.

Sherry's personal page:

Justin's personal page:

*Sweepstakes forms and information are available by contacting me [Masked Mom] in comments or e-mail.