“I think our daughter might be a bit of a lemon,” I joked to my husband one winter afternoon. After a six week stint with a nasty case of shingles and three more weeks struggling through pneumonia, she awoke that morning complaining of pain and stiffness in her left knee. I made an appointment with her pediatrician, who took blood and an x-ray and diagnosed her with growing pains.
My daughter, Isabel, was 10 at the time. It would take two more years of her cycling through a variety of illnesses and symptoms—including vague ones like fatigue and mild rashes—plus multiple visits to physicians and urgent care clinics, for her to finally be diagnosed with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA).
Read this entire piece about advocating for a child with an invisible illness at Today’s Parent (click here).