Two weeks after her second birthday, Lola refused to walk, though she looked as healthy as always. Because of a family history of autoimmune disorders, Lola’s doctor suspected she was suffering from arthritis. She was taken to Children’s Hospital where an MRI confirmed inflammation in both knees and juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). Steroid injections soon followed, along with oral medications. A year later, Lola’s pain intensified, and she was started on weekly Enbrel injections and daily Celebrex.
Lola’s medications help keep her active, but the pain in her knees and hands prevents her from doing all of the things her friends do. She cannot walk around the block without stopping to rest, or play at the playground without taking a break. Lola’s parents Aaron and Dena said, “Despite these challenges, Lola faces her blood draws, two weekly injections, and the swallowing of pills like a big girl.”
Lola is nothing short of amazing and loves anything princess-related. She also enjoys playing with her baby dolls and swimming. Her favorite subjects in school are music class and arts and crafts. Lola is also active in her church youth group.
When asked about her hopes for the future, Lola said, “I want to live pain free and run and play and ride a bike for a long time, like other kids.” She went on to say that when she grows up she would like to be a great ballerina dancer, a mommy and a doctor.