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February 26, 2001

February 26, 2001

Dear Family and Friends,

This is Jillianne, the natural diva and soon to be soap opera star. I am almost 14 years old and in the 8th grade. I was diagnosed with Lupus 4 years ago.

Awareness is very important, because a lot of people donít know very much about Lupus. Lupus is an autoimmune disease, which can affect any part of your body, including your joints or internal organs. Lupus causes your body to see your joints and/or organs as "bad guys", instead of "good guys", and attacks them. Basically your body gets confused and instead of attacking infections or virusí, it fights itself. This causes what is known as disease "flares". Lupus not only affects adults, but it affect children too, and their precious childhood.

Lupus affects me in a lot of ways. I get tired very easy and after a simple activity I will sometimes need to take a nap. When I am really fatigued, I might even sleep for 16-20 hours. I get joint pain all over. Sometimes I canít walk because my knees or ankles really hurt. Or, my fingers will hurt so badly that I canít write. I have to take a lot of medicine, sometimes as many as 20 pills a day. I also get a weekly chemo-therapy injections. I am lucky because Lupus can be much more serious.

On April 1, 2001 Iíll be participating in "Step for the Cure". This is a walk-a-thon for Lupus, which is sponsored by the Dorough Foundation. Howie Dorough is from the pop band, Backstreet Boys. As you may know Howieís sister, Caroline, died from Lupus. Ever since, Howie has been trying to spread awareness about Lupus and he also has been working on raising money for this life threatening disease. I would like to help by joining "Step for the Cure."

I would like to raise as much money as possible. I am hoping to raise up to $10,000. But I really need your help!!! It would be so great of you to make a pledge; any amount will help! People are suffering out there and we need to find a cure. We need to let people with Lupus live their lives, without pain, and this is a start. I know what I want and I hope you would want the same thing, a cure to Lupus. You know what to do!

Make a difference, and make a pledge!!!

Love and Harmony,

Jillianne Trotter,

(The Natural Diva and Soon To Be Soap Opera Star)!

Take one step closer to a cure Ė Support me in "Step for a Cure"