Dawn Isherwood, a health educator with the Lupus Foundation of America, reports that women of color are two to three times more likely than white women to develop lupus. It most often strikes women during their childbearing years, from ages 15 to 44. However, like Snoop Dogg’s daughter, Cori Broadus, who was first showing signs at age 6, it is not uncommon for a preteen to develop this chronic autoimmune disease that may affect the skin, joints, kidneys, brain, and other organs.
May is Lupus Awareness Month and author Kim Green, who’s been working very closely with the Lupus Foundation in order to raise awareness about the disease, has recently published a book titled, hallucination. It is currently on the foundation’s summer reading list and is receiving their support at various events.
Why did you write hallucination?
I wrote hallucination because I had always wanted to try to write a novel about an African American woman’s life and her main objective isn’t to land a husband. I wanted to write about a woman’s journey to finding ultimate peace and joy in caring for herself.
Are you personally affected by lupus or is someone close to you?
I am personally affected by lupus. I was diagnosed in 2003 — and I have several other friends and acquaintances who are also lupus patients. Whenever I am in a room full of black women, they all say that they also have it or someone close to them does. It is my hope that hallucination brings a more personal face to this dreadful condition that preys on women, and women of color mostly. It’s curious to me that because it mainly impacts women of color the funding and research efforts have been so scarce. What does that say? In working with the Lupus Foundation and the Lupus Research Institute, I have met such vibrant people who work tirelessly for this cause and I want to work with them to spread the word about this multifaceted and debilitating condition. I hope to be an example of hope and determination to heal ourselves from the inside out.
What is the premise of the novel?
The principle character named Morgan is only 15 years old when she suffers a traumatic event that impacts the rest of her life. The reader follows her on her journey as she matures and reaches the prime of her life, then her body fails her. The reader witnesses how she handles her illness and when she discovers the key to healing is loving herself. In a sense, it is a love story. It’s about falling in love with yourself.
What do you hope the readers gain from this book?
I hope that the readers gain an opportunity to look at themselves and the things that have impacted their lives. I hope that by reading about Morgan and her trials and tribulations readers feel free to review some of the choices that they have made. I find this kind of soul work key to women finding themselves. The book is not about being sick, it’s about being well inside and out. Please visit hallucinationthenovel.com to get your copy.
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