Did I have a stroke? I’m only 24?

Eight years ago I awoke to the weirdest feeling in my life. Or lack of feeling, I guess, I should say. I couldn’t feel the entire left side of my body. The inside of my mouth, my throat, my left leg, everything. The left side of my body felt foreign. Like it wasn’t mine. The left side of my face had started to droop. What was happening to me???

I was freaking out so I called my dad. After explaining my symptoms to him he concluded that it must have been a stroke. I went to the hospital, after 5 days of tests and no one telling me what was wrong I was pissed. I didn’t know what to do, who to talk to, I had to talk to the patient advocate to get answers. About an hour after he and I spoke the neurologist came into my room. He had looked at the MRI and told me that I hadn’t had a stroke, I had MS. That was all he said.

I cried for hours. My fiancé came to my room with my kids. My youngest was only 4 months old. I cried harder. The doctor explained that my life wasn’t over and we discussed treatment options. They started me on my first round of steroids. Little did I know, it would be the first of many rounds. In the last eight years I have had at least 30 rounds, between pills and IV steroids. I have countless flares and the symptoms are always different. It’s more than annoying.

For the last 2 years I haven’t been on any treatments, other than vitamins and I have had fewer flares than I did on the treatments. I hated always feeling sick from the shots. I hated giving myself the injections, I am a recovering IV drug addict and the needles just triggered the addiction. I tried the pill but it made me so angry all the time I felt like a ticking time bomb. I couldn’t feel like that with 2 young kids to take care of. But I think the hardest part for me is the pain and the stigma that being an addict, even if I am recovering, has given me. I live at a constant eight on the pain scale and the doctor’s won’t even try to help me. They say its all in my head. Haha they are right. It is all in my head. My nerves are damaged and causing me pain. But they won’t even try to help me. It’s exhausting trying to make people understand what I go through every day. Sometimes just taking a shower is all I can accomplish in a day. Getting out of bed is hard. I don’t know if this will help anyone but its my story, my life, and I keep fighting so my kids won’t ever think that their mom gave up.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The MultipleSclerosis.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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