Shelly's Story 

Shelly Clanton

About Shelly's Story
     My name is Shelly Clanton I am 45 years old. I was born in Chicago, Illinois and raised in Starkville, Mississippi. I have two daughters Shannon and Shareka who are living in Atlanta Georgia. I was diagnosed with Sarcoidosis at the age of 31. Being diagnose with Sarcoidosis is very challenging, with the help of God I raised two daughters but that was not easy, at the time I was diagnose my daughters were almost teenagers who were active in different sports, I often went to volleyball games feelings sluggish, joint pains and overall feeling terrible. There were plenty of days I stayed in bed until an hour before the girls got home from school, I would get up cook a meal or prepare to go to a meeting or a game.

        One day at a volleyball game, I almost blacked out a lady behind me gave me a piece of candy which made me feel better. I did not go to the doctor that particular day but a few days later my legs and ankles were swollen then I decided to go to the doctor.

     I went to an Internal medicine doctor she sent me to a Rheumatologist who diagnose me with arthritis in my legs and ankles. I was then put on Celebrex and Naproxen for a year and a half but began to have other complications. I started to notice fine purple itchy bumps on my arms and face which would come and go every two months. I decided to go to the doctor to have a biopsy done results came back Sarcoidosis.

        I prayed a lot because I love my daughters and I didn't want them to grow up disobedient because mom couldn’t perform her motherly duties or work a full time job or mom couldn’t take them shopping like most parents. Shareka and Shannon were my reasons for living. I had to take at least many different medications each day such as Imdur, Plaquenil, Atenolol, Prednisone Lyrica, Methotrexate and Folic Acid just to name a few. I was depressed a lot but God was so awesome my girls had no clue. There were many nights I didn't want to go to bed because I would wake up with this terrible chest pain, it was so severe after 3 episodes I had to go to the hospital because I need to be check to make sure I was not having a heart attack. Years passed and Sarcoidosis has progress and now I am using oxygen, I have been on oxygen since August 2012. The oxygen helps a lot, I do agree but God is my healer, I’m just being patient. I also take infusion which involves the administering of medication (Remicade) through a needle. It is prescribed when a patient condition is so severe that it cannot be treated by oral medication. Most of the time when required infusion therapy, infections are unresponsive to oral antibiotics. We are going to continue to spread the awareness about Sarcoidosis. Hopefully one day soon, researchers will find a cure for this illness.

        I started research about Sarcoidosis because I have not ever heard of the lung disease. I now see a pulmonary doctor, Rheumatologist, Ophthalmologist and a Cardiologist due to Sarcoidosis; I have pulmonary hypertension which is abnormal high blood pressure in the arteries of the lungs, which makes the right side of the heart beat faster than normal. Overall this illness can sometimes be controlled with Prednisone which is a drug used to treat certain inflammatory diseases and has many side effects.

        My faith in God helps me a lot without it I don’t know where I would be. I think life is what you make of it. I have learned to love life because “I am determined”.  

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     Hello my name is Shannon growing up at a young age with my mom and knowing she had the disease Sarcoidosis it was hard because I saw her in pain a lot. I never understood what Sarcoidosis was until I got older. I use to question myself "Why my mom?" As I got older I began to learn about the disease. I started doing my own research. I've always known my mom as being a very strong individual. She never gives up, constantly speaks positive, and never doubts her faith in God. My mother has her ups and downs but she never let it get to her. My mom is my biggest inspiration. She has taught me so much but most importantly she taught me how to be a strong individual no matter what I'm going through. I continue to keep the faith and put everything in God's hands.
     Hi my name is Shareka.  My mother has been living with Sarcoidosis for several years and it has affected me in several ways. Growing up with a mother who is living with health issues can affect a child in many ways such as physically, mentally and emotionally. I remember nights waking up to my mom having chest pain after chest pain it was very difficult to cope with especially knowing I could not do anything to help her feel better. I remember time after time just sitting there holding her just knowing that I could comfort her made me feel like a big girl. Being her support and back bone has really helped me become the supportive women that I am today. I have learned from my mother you can beat any illness in this world just from being strong and having faith. Faith has got her where she is today in this world. I love my mother more than words can explain.