I Have What?
Why am I telling my story, because other MS patients share some of these views with me. Why me, and where do I go Next. This disease is a family disease. I do not mean a hereditary disease but a disease that affects the family and true friends. How do they act around you? What should they say? Why is dad snapping at me I didn’t do anything. Why do I want to be alone at times and “Yes” do not baby me, I hate that! Those who love us the most we hurt the most. I think I apologize at least a dozen times a day.
The beginning, I have what? What do you mean I have MS? What is MS? How did I get it? Why did I get it? No Cure! So what’s next? This was my reaction! Was my reaction out of the ordinary or does it sound familiar. February 26th 2006 like any other day, up early in the morning waiting to take on the challenges of the every day events. I have clients to contact, invoices to deal with and scheduling the week’s events with family and friends. Something wasn’t the same, a burning annoying feeling in my left foot. Did I step on a nail or did I sprain my ankle sometime yesterday afternoon while working out. It wasn’t that bad so on with my work. A coworker asked me why I was limping, I wasn’t aware that I was. A few days later, pain still in the ankle, the burning feeling on the bottom of my left foot. What I did next was the first step of a long procedure of finding out what’s up!
I visited my family doctor and described my situation. He did his usual tests and showed zero emotions until he did some pressure points test to observe reflex reactions. He began to question some outcomes of the test and scheduled me to see a Neurologist. The following week I was squeezed in to see one and further tests were done. Electrodes were hooked up to me, eye tests, pressure point tests and other tests that probed and prodded my body. Two weeks later my first of many MRI’s at St. Michaels Hospital. If you are claustrophobic, I would suggest taking some drugs before entering the machine. Several weeks went by until I received the news that I have MS. OK now what, was my next question. I don’t remember what the Neurologist said after the initial news. My opinion it didn’t matter. I was in great shape, very healthy, competed in Martial Arts competition and in the best shape since high school. I just got kicked in the teeth and I could not defend myself.
My next task was to tell my wife and two boys about our dilemma. Yes I said our dilemma. MS affects the entire family. What can they do to help? What can I say to reassure my family that all will be ok? We as a family either become stronger or fall apart. Those are the two options. We became stronger, why there was no other acceptable choice. Yes I made changes in my life and so did my wife and my two teenage sons. Fatigue was my biggest obstacle. Oh, did I forget that shortly after my diagnosis, fatigue, foggy mind, loss of focus, problem speaking, blurred vision and loss of balance. Was I stoned on some high potent drug of did I just finish a 72 hr non sleep test.
Time passed, several more MRI’s , more lesions found, my symptoms worsened and my abruptness was out of control. My wife has another word for it but let’s not go there. Visit after visit from one specialist at Sunnybrook Hospital another from St. Michaels Hospital, no I am not taking the prescribed drugs because there was no reassurance of getting better. But was there relief or a cure in the future? I researched the internet about MS, who was doing what and where. What I read the most about research all papers stated a positive mind is at times more beneficial than any drug. Remember attitude is everything.
I am not alone in this fight. What can I do to further the study of MS and find a solution to this disease? I became involved with the local MS Chapter. I participated in the MS Walk, fundraised, sold carnations at the Carnation Drive, volunteered at the annual MS Golf Tournament. I no longer golf too dangerous for those around me. I Got Involved!!!!! I am making a difference!!!! MS needs to be cured. My vision is to have MS eliminated as was polio back in the 50’s or a vaccine that will protect you from MS. There is room on this bandwagon to Cure MS. Come for the ride. It will be one exciting ride!!!
This is my story! What is Yours!!!!