My story begins 16 years ago, in March of 1999…
My left foot became numb and gradually worked its way up until my entire left side was completely numb. Within days I had double vision and couldn’t walk a straight line if my life depended on it. I eventually ended up in the E.R. where they immediately set me up for an MRI. That first MRI showed one lesion on my brain stem.
My second MRI, in July, also showed that same lesion but it had gotten bigger. Still just one lesion, so it wasn’t “multiple” sclerosis.
Throughout the year I continued to experience different symptoms, such as choking, weakness, vision problems, etc.
In December 1999 I had another MRI and a spinal tap done. They both came back possitive for MS on December 17th. I now had 12 lesions.
So, it didn’t take long to get diagnosed, but now that I know what MS is and what the symptoms are, I know I had it in high school 33 years ago.
Needless to say, my life has taken a dramatic turn since then. I was working two jobs when I was diagnosed; within two years I was on disability.
My youngest daughter, now 20, doesn’t remember me without MS.
Seven years into the disease I found out I have PRMS.
No matter what form of MS you have the biggest thing you can do for yourself and for your MS is LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! If it’s tired, rest. If it wants sleep, go to bed. If it’s weak, sit down. Fighting it will only make it worse.
Everybody deals with MS differently, but I survive it with humor. I love to laugh!
I have found support from different sources. The National MS Society, seminars, different groups online, etc. Just keep looking until you find where you’re comfortable and where you fit in.
My life is amazing! Even with MS.
I have two amazing daughters, both in college.
I have met, and now live with, an amazing man.
I have wonderful friends and family.
I AM A VERY LUCKY WOMAN!
Just remember that MS doesn’t end your life, it just changes it.
Good luck to you all!
Tina has a wonderful story of courage and she does have an amazing sense of humor. She keeps everyone laughing. I know with a recent visit I had with a friend we took her picture and made a flat version of her. We took pictures doing all kinds of things (even going to get yogurt and picking my daughter up from school) It was hilarious and so much fun. It cheered me up when I was so sick and she was a great sport, laughing the entire time. She is always the first one to laugh and crack jokes. She may not know this, but she is a huge inspiration to so many of us in our group of peers. ~ Nancy