Saturday, June 5, 2010

Guest Post: Life with MS

Misti and her husband Corey were our first "couple" friends. They have a lovely three year old and a dog who wears eyeliner. Misti was recently diagnosed with MS and I have asked her to share her story here. 

It's been about 10 months since I have been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.  Its been a life changing thing.  Judie asked me to share a little with you about my journey.  Hope you enjoy it.

In August 2009, myself, my husband Corey, my daughter Miss A and the Harer's decided to go on a bike ride.  I think it was a 12 mile bike ride around lake Perris.  Everything was great.  We were almost done when I noticed my arm was going numb . This was NOT out of the ordinary for me.  I started to have this problem about 6 months after Miss A was born. So I wasn’t to alarmed.  Then my leg was going numb, and I became very confused, (and might I add scared to death.)  As we drove home I noticed that it was getting worse.  

Corey assured me that I would be OK, and that it was probably my anxiety having a flare up.  He dropped me off at Redlands Community Hospital, and asked me to call him after I was seen.  Thinking that I would get the typical " it's your anxiety", he took Miss A home to get her fed and ready for bed.  The nurse brought me straight back, my speech became more slurred, and the confusion was more then what I was experiencing before. The doctor ordered a CAT scan of my head. 

 In the mean time, the numbness was now my entire right side. I could hardly speak.  The doctor came in 15  minutes after the scan was completed and said that they would have to admit me.  There were some spots that were found on the scan and they want to do an MRI.  They do the MRI The following morning.  At this point I can't walk because my leg, along with the rest of my right side, is completely numb.  I can't even feel them poke it with a needle!!  

The doctor tells me that there are 5 lesions on my brain.  They are not sure what they are.  There not typical to the MS lesions, so they don't think its MS.  So the tests proceed.  He orders a spinal tap to be done.  A full body scan to be done.  A series of blood tests to be done. Every 4 hours to be exact.  In the mean time, I have to sit in this bed, and wonder what in the world is wrong with me.  I start to think "what will my daughter do without a mom?"  I sat in that hospital bed for FIVE days not knowing what was wrong with me!!!  They discharged me saying, "well it's not cancer, it might be MS, but your lesions do not look like it." I still couldn't walk and was wheelchair bound.   

Home life was so different for me. Since I couldn't walk, who was going to help me in and out of bed?  Who would take care of Miss A when Corey is at work?  How was I going to shower or get dressed?  Luckily, for me I had family. My sister came over and helped me take care of Miss A, she helped me bathe, and get dressed.  She would make our meals, do the laundry, and the grocery shopping.  All the things that I took for granted! 

I quickly went from wheelchair to  walker!  Yay me!! I used the walker for home and a wheelchair when we went out.  Its amazing the looks people give you when your in a wheelchair and you don't look disabled.  I slowly got the confidence, to try to start walking by myself. Three weeks after being discharged I was able to walk by myself!!  PRAISE GOD!!  

I finally went to a specialist where he diagnosed me with Tumefactive MS.  Which means the lesions are not typical lesions for MS.  He put me on a daily injection that is supposed to help prevent any more lesions from growing and prevent the ones I have from growing and possibly shrink.  Matter of fact, the last time I was admitted the doctor told me that some of my lesions have shrank.

In February I returned back to work, which I thought I would never be able to do.  In March, I participated in the MS walk and did 3K!!  Amazing, considering I had thought I would never be able to walk again!! Might I add, I am typing with BOTH hands, which took forever to be back to normal! The Lord has truly blessed me! I know I have a long road ahead of me, but with my faith in God, and the love and support of my family and friends, I can get through anything!!

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