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In 2013, I asked someone what exactly she knew about sickle cell anemia. She said not much; all she knew was that the famous singer, T-boz, has it. She ended by asking how much of a big deal it could possibly be, since T-boz seemed to be doing great. Of course, I told her a world of things having the disease could entail, but the main thing I took from that was that I needed to do something about the situation.

Many people hear about disorders, sickle cell anemia included, but have no clue what it really means to live with them. What exactly was I going to write? A book of medical details would most likely only be interesting to people with medical inclinations. I personally would barely give such a book a second glance. I needed to write in a fun but enlightening way that would appeal even to a person that has nothing to do with this disease, and so it hit me: a novel.

 So many people I know read novels and I have personally learned so much about diseases like cancer, Alzheimer’s and hemophilia from novels. If I could, I would not take back anything I learned about these diseases. Looking back, the enlightenment about the diseases did not take anything away from the stories themselves. Since I have loved writing fiction since age eleven, I decided to write with a purpose this time. I fused my two passions of writing and the disease I was born with into this piece, which I hope to share with the entire world. I hope this brings empathy, hope, and increased awareness in those not affected, as well as survivors like myself.

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