Sickle Cell Warriors


 Breaking News
  • VOICE Crisis Alert App VOICE Crisis Alert App The VOICE Crisis Alert app is the first national app created for patients and families with sickle cell disease. The app stores all its data locally...
  • World Sickle Cell Day 2018 Hello Warrior Family! Don’t forget, today, Tuesday June 19th is World Sickle Cell Day. This was specially designated by the World Health Organization in 2009 to improve the education, research, and...
  • SCD Adult Support Groups in Southern California California Warriors, great news! Cayenne Wellness is now hosting monthly support group meetings in Fresno, San Diego, Los Angles, Loma Linda, and Antelope Valley. You get to meet others with...
  • Tracing sickle cell back to one child, 7,300 years ago Tracing sickle cell back to one child, 7,300 years ago Check out this amazing article by Nalina Eggert of BBC News for a journey of SCD from 7,300 years ago.  The...
  • Meet Brittany: Caregiver, poet, and writer This week’s warrior in the spotlight is Brittany Hightower.  Brittany is a caregiver who is beautiful, intelligent, and passionate about poetry. And oh yeah, she has sickle cell. How old...

Meet Connella: Mom, Grandma, Entrepreneur, Warrior!

Meet Connella: Mom, Grandma, Entrepreneur, Warrior!

connellag Connella A Guilford is a phenomenal, energetic, enterprising woman who has not allowed SCD to limit her from being a mother, grandmother, and entrepreneur. 

How were you able to cope with school and sickle cell? I found out I had sickle cell when I was 8 years old. I had a praying Grandmother, and I did not limit myself until my body would tell me, “Ok, since you won’t slow down, I’ll make you lay down.” How did your childhood and your parents influence you in your choice of career? I must admit that it wasn’t until VERY recently that I figured out what I wanted to be when I grow up. Did I mention that I’m 41??? What do you do? What kind of experience and schooling does one need to get your job?  I am an Entrepreneur operating a Virtual Assistant Company, and I work for a Pharmacy Benefit Manager. Describe a typical day on your job. I work from home full-time and my day starts at 6 a.m., where I sit at a computer and have meetings via conference call ALL DAY LONG!  My day ends from corporate America around 3:30 or 4 p.m. and then I start MY business around 6 p.m. and I try to wrap up by 11.

cgsmall How do you manage SCD and still maintain a thriving career? I listen to my body and when it tells me to slow down, (and I don’t care what I’m doing in that moment) I slow down, even if it means laying down someplace close. Have you noticed a difference in how your coworkers treat you once they know you have SCD? OH YES!!! Because they know I’m a whirlwind dervish, if they know and sense that I’m doing too much they will call me on it on the spot…even virtually. What advice would you give to someone wanting to join your profession that has sickle cell?  LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! PERIOD! Has sickle cell limited any areas of your life? NONE. When you do reach obstacles in your life, what helps you through it? Prayer, inspirational music, and being still to regroup. Do you have regular pain (more than 2x a week)? How do you cope with this when you are working?  I have noticed that because I don’t move around like I did when I worked outside the home that I do experience pain more often. I attribute it to being in a stationary position many hours of the day. connella What is your daily medication regimen and what medications do you take when you are in pain?  Daily medication regimen…none. Pain: Hydrocodone. How has sickle cell affected your personal life? For example, are you in a relationship, do you have kids, etc. I do have 3 children and 1 grand child and they were unaware that I had it until they were teenagers.  So whenever I would have to go into the hospital I wouldn’t really tell them why because I didn’t want them to worry, and many times I would just suffer through the pain as much as I could so that they wouldn’t be sad or scared. If you do have kids, please describe in as much detail as possible, how your pregnancy, labor and delivery was. Do any of your kids have sickle cell disease?  I have 3 children (24, 20 and 11…soon to be 12) and each pregnancy was high risk, of course, but each one was VERY different. With my oldest it was text book…uneventful. With my 2nd there was a leak in my water bag at about 28 weeks, and I had to be hospitalized to try to keep him in as long as possible, to no avail. He was born prematurely via C-section, weighing 3.3 lbs, then dropped to 2.10 lbs. The 3rd was induced but for the most part was uneventful. Looking at the 14 year old version of yourself, what would you tell him or her if you could…?  Slow down…look for love in the right places not the wrong and you are not alone. Is there anything else that you would want to tell other sickle cell warriors? Yes! My Motto: BE PHENOMENAL…ALWAYS


About Author



Related Articles


No Comments Yet!

There are no comments at the moment, do you want to add one?

Write a comment

Write a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Support awareness & education for SCD

WordPress › Error

Error! Donation amount must be a numeric value.