Five girls became fast friends in Middle School.

We weren’t exactly a clique, but no one else was encouraged to join our tribe. We enjoyed taking classes together, hanging out at lunch, and many slumber parties.

We stayed friends during high school, even though two attended one high school, and three another.

As we grew, our lives drifted apart. In recent years, Facebook allowed us to virtually reconnect.

Here’s what I found fascinating. Of the five of us, one died in her forties from breast cancer. One developed Parkinson’s Disease. Another was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. Still, another suffers from rheumatoid arthritis and has had cervical cancer. Only one of the five seems to be healthy and illness-free.


All of us were born in 1955-1956. We grew up in middle-class suburbia. No one served in the Peace Corps in a foreign country. None of us was in the military. No one traveled to disease-ridden third-world countries. Why would the majority of us develop an autoimmune disease or cancer?

Collectively, autoimmune diseases are among the most prevalent diseases in the US, affecting 23 million Americans. They are more common among women. Autoimmune diseases are becoming increasingly prevalent, for reasons unknown. [1]

This reminds me of Adam and Eve in the Garden after the fall. Because they disobeyed God and ate the fruit, disease entered the world. See Genesis chapter three. Prior to that, their lives were perfect. They weren’t even supposed to die! But because they ate, they immediately became susceptible to illness, and eventually death.

I’m going to blame Adam and Eve. There seems to be no other explanation. Medical experts agree there is no explanation why autoimmune disease is on the rise.

Thank you, Eve!

[1] National Institute of Health, November 2012

Jane S. Daly is the author of two nonfiction books and five novels.

Jane is addicted to coffee, purple pens, and her husband, not necessarily in that order. A self-proclaimed introvert, she enjoys the solitude of riding shotgun in Rigsby, her 37-foot motor home. But when they pull into a new campground, her favorite thing is to make new friends and find hangouts featuring local musicians. Her fantasy involves writing lyrics for country music songs and hearing them played on the radio. In the meantime, she’ll stick to writing novels. And seeing as much of the country as possible.