My Lupus Story
Paige "Queen TuT" Stewart
My name is Paige “Queen TuT” Stewart, a business college student from Queens, New York. I am executive- assistant of a non-profit organization called Arts East New York in East New York, Brooklyn that brings quality dance & arts programing to the underprivileged youth of Brooklyn. At Arts East New York I help coordinate free shows for the community to instill a sense of unity and awareness as well as help run the dance/arts programming during the school year. (Arts East New York) I am also a dance instructor at various dance schools & public schools all over the tri-state area teaching kids ages three and up the techniques of hip hop dance, step and poetry. (TheQueenTuT.Com) I also have worked with autistic and emotionally challenged kids as well as peer counsel a group of young high school students in The National Sorority of Phi Delta Kappa Beta-Omicron Chapter in Jamaica, Queens and act as their artistic director, step master and supervisor.
Going by my stage name “Queen TuT” I am also a professional dancer who has performed beside artists such as Fred Hammond, Wyclef Jean, and Salt & Peppa to name a few. I am also a spoken word artist who has been a “Knicks Poetry Slam Finalist” and has been featured on the HBO special and was featured on Broadway multiple times. I aspire to use my talents and business skills to make a significant difference in people’s lives. I am also a skilled photographer and videographer who inspires communities to start change like getting fired up about raising Lupus awareness. (Youtube.)
I was diagnosed with Systemic Lupus Erythmatosus from the age of twelve which is a chronic immune disease which inhibits many challenges in my every day life. Lupus is a chronic, autoimmune disease that can damage any part of the body (skin, joints, and/or organs inside the body). Chronic, meaning the signs and symptoms tend to last longer than 6 weeks & often for many years. In lupus, something goes wrong with your immune system, which is the part of the body that fights off viruses, bacteria, and germs ("foreign invaders," like the flu). Normally our immune system produces proteins called antibodies that protect the body from these invaders. Autoimmune means your immune system cannot tell the difference between these foreign invaders and your body’s healthy tissues ("auto" means "self") and creates autoantibodies that attack and destroy healthy tissue. These autoantibodies cause inflammation, pain, and damage in various parts of the body. Being challenged with this difficult disease, I have been pushed back and suffered multiple ailments that haven landed me in the hospital with infections and most recently in January with a collapsed lung.
Now, out of the hospital and stronger than ever I raised over $700.00 in one month for Lupus awareness and I am attempting to finish school going for an Associates degree and Bachelors in Business. I want to live as an advocate of impossible circumstance and inspire people to achieve their dreams. Even though I have daily challenges even to breathe or do normal day to day activities I want to take a breathe of inspiration for those who cant teaching humility and perseverance to all the youth I come across.
Paige A. Stewart
Paige Alexis Stewart