Was a Practicing Clinical and Compounding Pharmacist with MS

Hello everyone. I’m a 69 year old male. Started RRMS at age 35. Converted to SPMS around age 60. Forced to retire MUCH MUCH earlier than I strived for in my professional career!!! I am an excellent Pharmacist, well liked by most of my patients and peers. I am a “people” person. I was a Pharmacy Manager for almost my entire career. I hired Pharmacists, Pharmacy Technicians, and Pharmacy Clerks with one of the requirements for employment to be a person who has the following traits: Compassion, Empathy, Kindness, ability to speak with someone NOT AT someone, stressing the importance that ALL patients would leave the pharmacy knowing what they were taking, why they were taking it, how they would take it, what MAIN side effects and precautions to look for. These requirements were PARAMOUNT in my decision making. That being said, we also had fun and laughter and we all got along extremely well. Wow, I sound like a real egotistical jerk. I am not, I’m trying to let you know the type of person I am.

Fortunately, my MS was controlled with medication enough that I could still practice. Unfortunately, once the slurring speech occurred and the pain was much more severe among the other symptoms I had, I was FORCED to retire early upon my own realities. My other signs/symptoms are typical for RRMS and SPMS, so I won’t bore you with listing them. Actually, my cognizant abilities have declined to a level, that I’m really forgetting information that is basic pharmacy. I could NOT function in a pharmacy setting.

I was a TERRIBLE high schooler and almost flunked out. I decided to enlist during the Vietnam Era in the Air Force. OMG, that was one of the BEST decisions I have ever made. After 4 years of service, I went to college and received my BS, was accepted to Pharmacy school then received my Doctor of Pharmacy, then completed my Residency in Clinical Pharmacy. I was married with two wonderful sons when I went to Pharmacy school.

I LOVE pharmacy. It took 9 years to become a pharmacist. I had planned on practicing until I was too old to function in that realm.

I really try NOT to be angry about my MS. For the most part I am happy. But I cannot quiet my anger after ALL the hard work and sacrifices I made, that MS took my life away so quickly and completely.
Thanks everyone for your time. Love to ALL.

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View Comments (6)
  • Laura Kolaczkowski
    2 years ago

    I am just reading your story and want to thank you for sharing. There are a surprising number of medically trained professionals with MS (though perhaps in line with the numbers in the general population) and it really helps our community to understand, unfortunately, that MS is an equal-opportunity disease and does not discriminate. be well, Laura MSnet author, moderator

  • mshults14
    3 years ago

    Your story is such an inspiration. I’m new to this forum & recently dx’d as well.I just wanted to say that you are in my prayers & thank you for all your service to your community & this community as well.

  • allinjay author
    3 years ago

    Thank you for your kind words. Since your new to MS and I’m assuming you are RRMS what I want to tell you is people in general REALLY don’t understand why you appear to be lazy, tipsy, a “cry baby”, faking, or a plethora of other “hidden” symptoms you will have. Strength of character is a trait you MUST develop over time to deal “kindly” with these people. Ya know a smile and just saying I have MS and what I’m experiencing and what you are seeing is probably going to get worse over time so please try to understand and wish me Godspeed in my journey.

  • DonnaFA moderator
    3 years ago

    Hi, allinjay, thanks for sharing your story and thank you for your service.

    I can hear your passion for your profession. Have you checked into the American Pharmacists Association New Practitioner Mentor Program. It would allow you to stay connected to your profession with no structured demands of your time.

    We’re glad you’re here! -All Best, Donna (MultipleSclerosis.net team)

  • allinjay author
    3 years ago

    Donna, thank you and yes I have. Be healthy sweetheart

  • DonnaFA moderator
    3 years ago

    Hi, allinjay, you’re most welcome, thank you and healthy wishes back to you! -All Best, Donna (MultipleSclerosis.com team)

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