My Life is Life with MS
Name: Jane D. in Indiana
How long with MS: 36 years with MS
Year DX: probable MS DX in 1973
Type of MS: Benign for many years then secondary progressive either about 10 yrs ago or since December, 2008-it's a judgment call
Hello, I guess I am a veteran MSer. I had been married just a year when I went blind (over several days) in one eye. The doctor added up some unexplained symptoms I'd had in college (vertigo, numbness and double vision)and put it together to spell m-u-l-t-i-p-l-e s-c-l-e-r-o-s-i-s. Of course there were no MRI's back then, but because my symptoms involved separate body systems and separate times, I was given the probable diagnosis. MS was much harder to diagnose back then, but my symptoms fell right for a DX.
I continued for the first years with a relapsing/remitting type of MS which over the years gave way to a more daily bout with sensory symptoms as well as numerous kinds of pain. I managed without drugs for the MS because at that time there were none. My philosophy was to save the drugs (steroids)for the "big stuff" that might come down the line. Instead of paralysis (thank you, God) or not being able to walk, I had virtually all the "little" stuff" over the years: basically all the scores of obnoxious, painful, annoying, disruptive, horrible, and undesirable things MS can bring to a life. But I slowly learned to cope with them, maintain a peace of my own despite trials, and persevere.
I am married to a wonderful husband, Bill, who thoroughly "gets it" now, but was seriously in denial for the first 25 years. We have three grown children and two black labs who are outdoor dogs. I eagerly await the day when I can skip mentioning the dogs and talk about grandbabies!
I set out right away to live a quiet life with the MS determining my style. We did have three children when the doctor suggested one or none because it was my greatest desire in life. I have always been careful to watch my three MS priorities from the start: fatigue, stress and heat.
For the past 18 years I have tutored grade school children part time, first at an enrichment center, now in my home. I also taught flute in my home. I was able to attend all my childrens' activities with the exception of a couple hot weather ones.
I spend a good deal of time on the computer as I have loved making friends, meeting and helping fellow MSers. I led multiple weekly AOL chats for ten years.
I very much support Cir and Akrista's venture of In Spite of MS! I love their attitudes, and I think they have a very fine start. I am thrilled they invited me to be a part of it. I look forward to many fun and informative times here. I know that together we can help make MS manageable!
With hope, appreciation, and love,
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