4A’s Sisters Lupus Foundation of Lafayette, La would like to honor Bettie Carter this week.
A Lupus survivor for 26 years and advocate for 23 years. Chairperson, Health Coordinator, Event Coordinator, Secretary and PR person for “Living Life” with Lupus Support Group, 501(c)3 organization. Lupus Autoimmune Advocacy 2.0 and Tools for Lupus Autoimmune are on Facebook where she also advocates for Lupus.
A mother of 4 daughters, 10 grand children, 2 great grandson, 1 daughter and 1 aunt with Lupus.
Her story started once she moved from California to Chicago August 1994. Driving a truck with all her kids belongings and pulling her station wagon was no fun. She was very healthy, very active and very fit. The first 3 months she felt like she had the Flu or a bad cold, once her face started swelling and cheeks were red she knew it was something else.
She went to the ER about 10 or 12 times within 5 months with pain and swelling and each time she was given creams and pain meds, which only lasted about 2 or 3 weeks. They never could find out what was wrong.
Bettie was able to be pain free for about 2 months and found a job that lasted 3 weeks. One night she went to use the bathroom and the next thing she woke up in ER. She was out for about 2 or 3 hours and when she woke up it was a nurse checking her blood pressure. Bettie asked her where am I and she said, you passed out and you are in ER. After she finish she asked her can I get a blanket and she said yes. As she was comforting her with the blanket she said: Oh, you will be alright you just have “Lupus”.
Bettie asked her what is that, and she said, you haven’t seen the doctor yet, she said no, she said oh well, he will be in to tell you.
Bettie was blown away because she had never heard of Lupus and was very scared. Let’s make this go straight to the point. She found a great Rheumatologist and he keep her Lupus under control for 3 years then it started affecting her bones.
Bettie had to have surgery every other year for 10 years, 3 total hip replacements, a left shoulder and 4 foot surgeries. Her bones brakes easily so, she have broken 2 or 3 of her toes, oh and she can’t leave out, most all her teeth fell out so she have a full upper and working on the bottom. Now when she found “Living Life” with Lupus Support Group her whole life changed.
They have help her to become the person she is, the speaker she became and the advocate she is. She have been in remission for 11 years and she loves what she do for Lupus.
Her family are huge supporters and her grandkids help her more than her kids. She’s very happy to see the platform they have now because when she was diagnosis she could not find one person who knew what Lupus was and if they did they would say, “Oh my friend died from Lupus”. She’s blessed to still do what God called her to do, make the whole world know about Lupus and hopefully find a cure.
Bettie have participated in many events in the Chicago area and surrounding suburbs by speaking at health fairs, schools, churches, hospitals and fundraisers for Lupus. Her organization has received the Proclamation from the Mayor of Chicago declaring May 10th as Lupus Awareness Day in Chicago for the past 3 years. They are also responsible for lighting one of Chicago tallest building downtown, Blue Cross Blue Shield with the words “END LUPUS”. She traveled to Detroit and Milwaukee to help support other Lupus events and fundraisers for the past 6 years. She participated in several Lupus studies at Northwestern Memorial Hospital under her Rheumatologist in Chicago, Dr. Rosalind Ramsey Goldman. She continues to educate the public about Lupus by being a guest on local TV Talk Shows, The AC Green Show V103, Chicago Inspiration Radio 1390AM with Marcella Jones and Living Life In Midlife Radio in Washington DC with Pia King. She spoke at the IL House of Representatives-
97th General Assembly, Chairperson Willie Davis and went to Washington DC to speak to Congresswoman Robin Kelly about more funding for Lupus research. A volunteer for Lupus walks with The Lupus Foundation of America, Lupus Research Alliance and Lupus Society of IL.
“She Women Empowerment Award for Outstanding Leadership and Contributions for the Lupus community from CEO Sandra Epps, Detroit Mi.
Letters of appreciation:
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
Zeta Phi Beta Sorority
Eastern Star #151 (past) Worthy Marton Sarah Mayberry
Battlefield for Lupus, Crystal Stotts, Milwaukee, WI
South Shore-Chicago Historical Society
The Gwen Knapp Center for Lupus & Immunology Research
Bettie Carter – Chairperson -PR
“Living Life” with Lupus Support Group
PS- show your 💕