Hi, Helen, and welcome to you. I was Dx'ed with the SCLE subset in summer 2000. I take Plaquenil, and it's helped a lot after decades of serial & widely varied problems. I'm very photosensitive and have to be very careful outdoors (bah!).
While I love to read "serious" books, I also actively seek humor in friends, books, movies, etc. I'm a doggie lover, too: we have a clownish terrier who adds a lot of laughter to the household. I gave up high-impact exercise about 10 years ago & switched to floor Pilates. I have to force myself some days, but I find not moving is worse.
Coping is hard & I do have blue spells... I try to limit the amount of time I allow myself to feel bad. I'm a big fan of the Board here and find it helps hearing the voices of others. I did go to a local group for awhile. But here, it's utterly democratic, full of goodwill, no jockeying for titles or position.
I'm better at saying NO than I used to be. I was brought up to work hard & not be idle. Having to redefine yourself & learn new ways to feel reasonably good about yourself... well, it's certainly an ongoing process---and necessary! I mutter "EVER ONWARD!" a lot.
Hang in there! With best wishes, Vee