A woman in an electric wheelchair racing up an incline with a cape flowing behind her.

I Have Progressive MS, but I Still Can Save the Day

It is understandable to assume that my husband Dan often is seen as the caregiver in our relationship. After all, I’m the one using the wheelchair, and he’s the one walking, working and driving despite his Multiple Sclerosis.

My importance as his caregiver

Plus, it has become fairly common for him to help me finish the last few bites of my meals because I’m too weak to lift the food to my mouth. OK, for the most part, this assumption about Dan being the caregiver is correct, but every once in a while I demonstrate my importance as his caregiver.

Leave it to our recent flight to San Francisco from Detroit’s Metropolitan Airport to prove that point and inspire me, in true Mighty Mouse fashion, to belt out, “Here I Come To Save The Day!”

We were all prepared, except...

Our nearly six-hour flight to San Fran was scheduled to board at 12:15 p.m., and we were all prepared. Well, except for Dan’s Dramamine.

He doesn’t get airsick because he is proactive. Dan normally takes this medicine before we fly and then, no trouble. I carry a bottle of these pills in my purse, but of course, before our first trip to the West Coast, there were none to be found. And Dan’s reaction to the empty container? “Oh, I’ll be fine.“

Oh really? Sure, it was a little before noon and the airport was busy with Spring Break travelers, but it was an almost six-hour flight! Not exactly the ideal flight to test the strength of Dan’s stomach.

I wasn't going to let a packed airport stop me

I understood his thinking that he could tough it out because he didn’t want to deal with the Dramamine shopping hassle or frustration. But I knew he needed it. This trip was going to be epic! I wasn’t going to let a packed airport stop me.

“Give me some money,” I somewhat forcefully barked. Dan didn’t hesitate and put a $10 bill in my left hand. I jacked up the speed my power wheelchair and I was off.

Ten dollar bill whipping like a flag in the wind, I quickly drove through the crowded airport concourse dodging daydreaming tourists and their small suitcases.

Queue the Mighty Mouse music here.

Zooming through the airport

The first store was simply newspapers and magazines, no soothing sundries. Don’t stop, just keep moving. I zoomed past another Spring-Break-traveler-filled boarding gate and quickly glanced at a concourse clock. Better hurry! But just then, there in the distance, was a gift shop that looked promising.

I zipped over to it and was surprisingly winded, but I was able to wave my $10 bill and breathlessly exclaim, “Dramamine?”

The helpful and friendly clerk understood my request and handed me the valuable package. She placed it and the change in my left hand, and I was on my way.

I did save the day

I hurriedly and victoriously drove back to our departure gate. Proving that yes, I did save the day.

This shopping adventure was intended to help Dan, which it did, but it also helped me. While I may not be able to do as much as I used to, it reminded me that I still am an important part of our team. And no MS can take that away from me!!

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