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What I Wish...

Blog Summary

MS symptoms vary from person to person. Even more, symptoms are often invisible. Because of this, it can be difficult to describe your symptoms or get someone to relate to your experience. For MS Awareness Week (March 11-17), we asked you, “what do you wish people knew about MS?" Here’s what you said...

Turning Adversity into Opportunity

Blog Summary

When you’re faced with an adverse situation, there are three ways to look at it: a problem, a challenge or an opportunity. A problem is something that festers—it negatively affects your life. A challenge is a struggle that you must overcome. Now, looking at those two options, it would seem there’s nothing but gloom and doom when you’re faced with a troubling news. But there is another way to look at it...

Care That's Personalized for You

Blog Summary

Receiving a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis can be frightening. I know firsthand—I was diagnosed in 2013 shortly after I turned 29. I worried about my future and mourned for my past.   The disease comes in several forms with many manifestations. Much like our varied symptoms, people living with MS embark on different journeys. But while our individual experiences may be unique, there are similar underlying needs and conversations that must be had...

My Story Goes on

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Stunned is hardly the word for how I felt … Shocked, devastated … those are the feelings I remember. At age 45, I had finally achieved some professional success, having just been named partner in a large law firm. It had been a struggle because for 20 years I had been experiencing odd physical sensations, fatigue and inability to concentrate.   In my personal life, I had two young children, had recently remarried, and had welcomed two stepchildren. What had been a happy new life for all of us suddenly became a very confusing, painful time. Full of many questions and concerns, and none of us had any answers...

5 Minutes

Blog Summary

The day before, a professional triathlete gave me this advice: “You must keep moving. You cannot stop.” I had just completed 11.9 miles of the Pikes Peak Ascent (PPA), a half marathon that ranges from an elevation of 6,300 feet in Manitou Springs, CO to the 14,115 feet summit of Pikes Peak, and reached the Cirque Aid Station. The freezing point temperature I had expected and planned for by this altitude was instead about 70 Fahrenheit. I had been ahead of schedule, but now I risked exceeding the maximum allowed time of 6.5 hours. And I really needed to stop...

Talking to My Children about MS

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Even if the sun was shining and the day was warm, I’d cringe whenever I’d drive by the park with my sons. Because I knew my 6 year old would ask to stop.   And I knew I’d have to say no...

Not ______ Enough

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I will never forget the first time I felt “less than.” I was onstage and in costume, ready to perform for the very first time at the local Greek festival. Our dance troupe director was welcoming the audience and explaining the origin of our opening number. The girl standing next to me in line started to ask the dancers in the immediate area “how much Greek” they were. She went down the line...

Appreciating Myself and All That I Am

Blog Summary

I don’t know if anyone else experienced this, but after my diagnosis, I felt like half a person. I felt like everyone around me could see that I was “incomplete” because of the way I walked, slurred my speech or lost my ability to write my name. Bouncing back from this initial shock wasn’t easy. Through my journey with MS, I’ve struggled to accept that I will not be able to do certain things all the time. Sometimes my friends want to go hiking on the weekend and my body just says “No!” There are days where I want to accomplish so many things and I have to face the reality that I’m celebrating the fact that I even got out of bed that day. This is reality.

Can't Stand Ya

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I can’t stand. That’s the entire sentence—not an abridged version or a double entendre. I really have a difficult time standing in place...

Repairing Myelin to Restore Function

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There were many talks about some really interesting and promising research at the 2018 ACTRIMS Forum. What’s great is that you can browse the online abstracts (scientific summaries) of the ACTRIMS Forum presentations and posters to see for yourself.   One of the most interesting and exciting talks I heard was presented by the latest winner of the Barancik Prize for Innovation in MS Research, Dr. Robin Franklin from Cambridge University. This is the first time that the Barancik Prize has been presented at the ACTRIMS Forum, and he gave a great lecture (here’s a video that introduces Dr. Franklin, in case you’re interested)...

Did You Know?

Blog Summary

Greetings from the ACTRIMS Forum 2018! This 3-day meeting brings together almost 1,000 MS-focused health care professionals, such as researchers and neurologists, and lets them share their latest research findings. I wanted to share with you a few of the amazing things I’ve learned so far at this inspiring meeting.   There are plenty of lectures from experts who were invited to review the latest research on specific topics. Then there are also presentations by investigators who submitted summaries of their results to the meeting organizers, for possible acceptance as either lectures or as posters. I happen to love poster sessions. Kind of like a science fair, you can go up to researchers and their posters and talk to them about their work...