Our dear mother, Lilly Jesudason, passed away last year at the age of 87. She had lived with and persevered despite rheumatoid arthritis for nearly 48 years. The newer medications gave her some of the best years of her and our lives. We are so grateful that these recent arthritis research discoveries added those vital years to her life – years filled with love and wisdom she imparted to us. We want to acknowledge everyone who has donated to or volunteered for the Arthritis Society in the years gone by.
Originally from Sri Lanka, she and our Dad moved to Nova Scotia with their young family in November of 1966. There were many adjustments, frigid temperatures not being the least of them! She raised a family and taught, but also shoveled snow, got fresh fish from the local fisherman and was very active in the community and church. She became an integral part of the communities in which she lived. “Mum” was devout, resourceful, tireless and loving – a wonderful example for us and everyone in her life.
Our mother lived a vibrant, loving and generous life thanks to two important gifts.
First, she was blessed with an abiding faith, constant gratitude for her many blessings and an unbending determination not to let her pain slow her down or prevent her from taking care of her family. Secondly, new medications made possible by arthritis research helped her manage her pain and increase her mobility. We are so grateful to her rheumatologist who recognized the need for some of those newer medications that slowed the progression of her arthritis while mitigating side effects. Mum had been on several medications in the past, some with terrible side effects. Advances in research, made possible by dedicated researchers and by generous contributions to the Arthritis Society, not only stabilized her condition, but were safer options for her. We quickly realized the importance of continued research in this area.
We saw our mom go through excruciating pain and suffer without treatment for many years. We saw her lovely fingers and joints become deformed. It is difficult recognizing the obstacles that people with rheumatoid arthritis go through yet persevere. Today, we realize how our mom’s strength and determination to see a difficult job through to its completion inspires us and everyone she touched in her lifetime. These are great lessons to live by.
If arthritis has touched you or your loved ones the way it has touched ours, we encourage you to make a gift in their honour to the Arthritis Society or a legacy gift in your will or retirement fund to the Arthritis Society. It’s a gesture of generosity which helps to keep their memory alive. Perhaps your generosity will give others extra years with their loved ones – and you can’t put a dollar value on that.
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