“Why are you still studying? You will never get a job anyway.”
Words hurt, especially when people assume that you are completely helpless because of your disease. But these are just words, your faith in yourself and your will to reach your goals will always be stronger and more powerful.
Meet Pam Hernandez-Fajardo, the Senior Paraplanner for an Australian Financial firm who she set her eyes on her goals and achieved them despite naysayers.
Pam was diagnosed with Systemic Lupus Erythemathosus when she was 19 years old. She was in her second year of college taking up Bachelor of Science in Business Management when she developed rashes on her face. Her hair also started falling off, she had kidney problems, and her joints became inflamed. After going through check-ups and numerous blood tests, the doctors finally diagnosed it as lupus.
She would attend her classes wearing a mask and a headband that was big enough to cover the bald spots. People were afraid to come near her thinking that she was contagious, and one particular person told her that she had no chance in getting a job in the future.
“I’m glad I listened to that person.
I used her words to motivate myself and prove
that I’m more than my sickness.
There are some things in life that are out of our control
but we just need to accept them and be grateful for everything.
Just don’t give up and have faith. There’s always an answer
to everything. I made this far because I refuse to give up.”
March 2010, Pam graduated on time despite having lupus. She never gave up, and she found a way to balance studying and living a healthy lifestyle.
Pam is now the Senior Paraplanner for an Australian Financial company. She is the only woman and only Filipina in their team, and she is proud to be working with a group of strong and intelligent men. Her colleagues know that she has lupus and it doesn’t bother them because she does her job and she does it well.
She has never allowed her disease to stop her from finishing her degree. She has never allowed naysayers tell her that she could not do anything. And she has never allowed her lupus to prevent from living the life she wants.
Pam Hernandez-Fajardo, Lupus Warrior.