Vanessa Wade

Vanessa Wade
Vanessa Wade
Road to Recovery – How a Young Professional juggles Entrepreneurship and Sickle Cell
I laid there with the worst pain a person could have. It seemed like I was being stabbed over and over while someone pinned my legs. I couldn’t walk, My heart was racing. This was the beginning of the fight for my life.
Let’s start from the beginning. I was born with Sickle Cell and although I had a crisis before, (pain that can begin suddenly and last several hours to several days caused when red blood cells block blood vessels that carry blood to your bones and causes sharp, throbbing pain in your joints). If you are familiar with Sickle Cell is not an easy disease by any stretch of the imagination.
I never used my illness as an excuse not to work hard. I still jumped and played like the other children. There was nothing different about me as far as I was concerned, I just needed to take extra measures in order not to get sick or over heated. So when my crisis happened in 2010 it spiraled into a deep depression. This is was the first time I was hospitalized longer than two weeks and treated like a druggie. Nothing the doctors did eased the pain. I had just moved to DC to work my dream job and this was going to be the best time of my life, but nothing went as planned. After a day at The White House I felt ill.  I went to the doctor and was told I had Bronchitis, but since I know my body, that answer didn’t suffice. Something just didn’t feel right but I couldn’t put my finger on it. The medicine didn’t work and soon I had hives over every inch of my body! Surely this wasn’t a Sickle Cell Crisis was it? Lupus? The next day I woke up with severe leg pain, but being the Wonder Woman I am, I ignored it. A little pain wasn’t going to ruin my day. The next thing I knew I was balled up crying and asking my sister to get me to the hospital. One thing that people with Sickle Cell deal with is the lack of knowledge concerning it, so no matter how professional I looked or spoke it meant nothing. I remember laying there wondering why me and why now? I am usually an optimist but the pain was getting worse and worse by the minute. I passed out and woke up to my sister crying and a minister from my church in the room. I remember him telling her she needed to be strong because I needed her. It was a team of nurses working on me. Did I have surgery? Was I going to lose my legs? Would I ever walk again? It wasn’t until I was airlifted that it really hit me -I was dying.
Read the full article at Black Professional Woman