My MS Story starts the way so many others have, I think. I spent most of my twenties “sick,” I suppose is the best way to describe it. I remember sitting with friends when I was in my mid-twenties, and I had made a joke about feeling like crap. Nobody got the joke. It was this exact conversation that hit me like a ton of bricks, not everyone ALWAYS feels sick. I guess I had felt awful for so long I hadn’t noticed. I had been in and out of the hospital that I thought it was just an everyday part of my life and I just assumed everyone dealt with this to a certain degree. I was progressively getting worse and had decided I was sick because of something I was or was not doing.
I had decided that I must be causing this with poor diet and exercise, so I began revamping my life completely. For almost 2 years I felt better than I could ever remember feeling, but still dealing with symptoms the doctor’s called severe vertigo, etc. However, comparatively speaking I felt great. I went to sleep one night and went to get out of bed in the morning, only to land flat on my face, dazed and confused about what just happened. My legs were not working and I couldn’t stop throwing up. The scariest part I suppose, was that I noticed my mind was not working right either. When taken into the ER, I could not recall my birthday, middle name, or most of the information about myself. Within 5 days of entering that emergency room, I was officially diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis.
For the next 2 years, I would remain basically bedridden. I found myself trying different treatment options, rehabilitation facilities, PT/OT therapy, the list goes on. Throughout this journey, the medical professionals were trying to help me get used to the idea that this was the new ME. This was my life now. At some point in the deep darkness, I made a choice. I made the choice that if this is indeed my new life, then I was going to show my daughters how to still live it happily, with dignity and grace. I was not just going to give up and remain weeping in that bed. I could and would still LIVE. I began that night at 1:00 am exercising in that very bed. Deciding if this was all I ever could do, I was going to do it, EVERY SINGLE DAY. My daughters became excited and our house was again filled with happiness and hope. Happiness that although this down right sucks, we can still be happy. Within a few months, I was walking to my front door with assistance. Now years have passed and Multiple Sclerosis still effects every single second of my daily life. The daily symptoms are simply just too much to include here. However, on most days I walk unassisted. On most days I am able to use my hands. On most days I exercise. On most days I am happy. On most days I am just simply ME.