This month in honor of MS Awareness Month, we are introducing you to Real People with MS. Today Modern Day MS writer Rachael is sharing her interview with Kathy.
How many years have you lived with MS?
“Over 20 years. My first disease symptoms began before puberty; because I was young enough to assume them normal, then too old to display vulnerabilities. I wasn’t diagnosed until 28, when mowing the lawn ended up in an MRI.”
What medication and/or natural treatments do you use?
“My DMD is Gilenya and I take 10,000iu of D-3 daily. For other MS-related problems I also take Doxepin, Myrbetriq, and Diazepam. I’ve cut gluten from my diet and try to eat mindfully, knowing that what I put into my body is the fuel it uses to either live, or live well. Every week I attend a “Yoga for Everyone” class for people with disabilities (it doesn’t hurt to be married to a yoga instructor, either).”
What is something about MS that you wish more people knew?
“It’s as much of a curse as a blessing to look just fine.”
Any advice for someone who’s newly diagnosed? How has MS made you stronger?
“The ironic truth is that if you are happier and more grateful for life, you can better control the roller coaster you’ll feel like MS has forced you on. Actively seek things that make you smile and laugh, and please do an internet search for Dr. Terry Wahls.”
“MS has made me more a part of myself by forcing me to listen to my body – granted, sometimes that is like listening to two screaming infants attached by duct tape to your legs, but you’ll learn how to better respond to the noise and how to sometimes avoid making the noise worse.”
What do you think is the future of MS treatment?
“My mantra is: There’s never been a better time to have MS, because science is making incredible advancements. Keeping up with the research end of things gives me so much hope for treatments not just to prevent or detect the disease earlier, but also to help with the disability MS has already caused in advanced patients.”
What quote inspires you?
Please share Kathy’s story to teach others that multiple sclerosis does not look a specific way. You might interact with people silently suffering every day. You may also enjoy Fran, Sadie, Vanessa, John, Maria and Yvonne’s Real MS Stories.