Thursday, August 16, 2012
My Life with Multiple Sclerosis
My life with MS
Life with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is not fun nor is it easy. Are there others out there worse off than me? You betcha! This is not a post to whine and complain, it is just to share with you some of the things I go through because of MS.
1. Chronic pain. Yes, I have pain EVERY single day. My husband is always telling me I am the toughest person he knows. I don’t believe it. I am not tough; far from it. I feel like all I do is complain or whine. I have trouble sleeping because of the pain. I have pain in my arms, legs and feet primarily. I have pains that come and go; some that never go away; burning pain; stabbing pain; throbbing pain and dull pain.
2. Vitamins (and lots of them). I currently take Fiber (sluggish bowels ever since I was diagnosed); 1700 IU of Vitamin D; 1130mg Calcium; 8500 IU Vitamin A; 1100 mg of Vitamin C; 35 IU of Vitamin E; 5 mg Vitamin B6; 255 mg Selenium; 1000 mg fish oil; 250 mg Chromium; and a multi-vitamin. There are several other vitamins that are recommended but I can only buy so much at a time.
3. Foot Drop. This is where you can’t really lift the front part of your foot. When this happens to me (which occurs at least once a week), I just kind of swing my leg around. Keeps me from falling as much.
4. Fatigue. Unless you have MS, you just don’t get it. I suffer from unimaginable fatigue. It isn’t just I worked all day and I’m bushed. I do nothing all day long and still need naps. I get so tired I cry because I’m tired. I am so tired that I can’t function a great deal of the time. I am sure part of the reason is lack of sleep. I toss and turn and wake up at least 10 times a night due to pain, etc.
5. Urinary, digestive and bowel problems. Nuf said.
6. Leg and arm pain. There are times that I feel like a screw driver is stuck through my muscles of my right arm or my right leg. It is usually sudden and can stay for 5 minutes or 5 days.
7. Feet pain. For the past 2-3 weeks, it feels like I am walking on nails or that nails are pushed up through the bottom of my feet. This pain is nearly constant. On top of this, at least once a day, I get a sharp sudden pain in one of my feet like I just stepped on a sharp piece of glass and it is deep inside my toe. This often happens when I am on the bed and only when I push on the area that is hurting will the pain let up. Or I get a pain along my toe nails that feels like someone just shoved a toothpick under my nail. Sounds fun, huh?
8. Balance issues. If you should see me out walking (which you won’t, I do not get out much anymore) half the time you would probably think I was drunk. I am always walking into walls.
9. Depression. I get so depressed at times it is scary. I hate it. I have a great husband and great kids. I have no reason to be so sad but I can’t control the feelings.
10. Cognitive issues. This one probably bugs me the most. I used to be the most organized person in the world. I could remember pretty much everything and could multi-task like no other. Now,….please! I have memory issues. I can’t drive alone anymore. I will forget where I am going. Get lost in my own town. Get scared. Not know where I am even at. I get confused over the littlest things. I hold a Bachelor’s degree and now I have trouble putting thoughts together, spelling, etc.
11. Speech issues: This is one of the more embarrassing. I get to stuttering a lot now. I will try to say something and I am like a broken record and get “stuck” on one word and repeat it 4-5 times. I may try to say one word and I say a completely different word. I may have trouble forming sentences correctly. I try to say them but the words get rearranged by the time they come out of my mouth.
12. Swallowing difficulties. There are times I can’t swallow. Lots of the times, I do not even have anything in my mouth. It is just like my body has forgotten how to swallow. When it happens I almost feel like I am choking or drowning. It is scary.
One of my biggest complaints is people who say things like “Oh, I knew someone with MS and they didn’t’ have anything like that. Are you sure you have it?” Ugh! MS is not the same for everyone. Different people have different symptoms. Do you know there are over 70 different symptoms with MS? Click here or here to read more.
If you know someone who suffers from MS, be there for them. Please do not say “well, get some rest and you’ll feel better” or “hope you feel better soon”. It is not like a cold. It is not going to go away. There are good days and bad days but it is an incurable disease. Be sympathetic. Help out when you can by cooking a meal, doing some laundry or just listening to them. Let them know they are not worthless; they are still the same person.
Thanks for letting me share about this awful disease.
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