Mish Mosh Life
I was diagnosed with relapsing-remitting MS back in 2014 when the left side of my body lost all mobility, and I was experiencing consistent diplopia in both eyes. After a solid week of Solu Medrol steroids administered via IV, months of pushing forward, and the discovery of nutrition and exercise, I got most of my mobility back. Fast foward 4½ years later, I have been blessed to be relapse-free ever since… until now.
For the last month or so, I have been experiencing new symptoms; more consistent chronic pain, numbness in my hands I didn’t notice until I realized I was using boiling water to wash the dishes, and something a bit scarier. I haven’t been able to formulate complete sentences without tripping over my words for weeks. As someone who works in corporate professionally and just barely gets by thanks to my words, this has been earth shattering.
The simple sentence “that video was really funny,” comes out more like “that vyideeo was r-really hilfun.” I don’t know if my thesaurus brain was going for “hilarious” or what, but it definitely didn’t come out as intended. With important meetings with my new accountant, bosses, new clients, and more stress pouring in on the daily—successfully maneuvering my way through life without the ability to communicate has become impossible.
Many people don’t think about the art of communication because it’s something we use every single day. The interesting part is that while I’m struggling to convey my spoken words, I am also struggling to type them too. My fingers are positioned correctly over the keyboard, but nothing I type is spelled correctly, and some sentences don’t make sense. Is there something new misfiring in my head that I just don’t have the exam results to prove?
The thought that these new symptoms can be leading to a relapse, or worse, progression of my MS is terrifying. I refuse to give up, though, even if the worst possible outcome is lurking in the dark corners of my mind. I continue to smile and laugh at the gibberish spewing out of my mouth; I continue to exercise despite the lack of feeling in my hands; I continue to be myself even when I’m scared. I will never let MS take over my life, even when it’s really trying.
There is more to me than a chronic illness, and I am going to tell my story—one mish-mosh sentence at a time.
Breaking the cycle of exclusion: Embracing cultural competence in physical activity research for people with MS
Cultural competence in research involves considering the culture and diversity of a population.
An MS diagnosis in college didn’t stop Téa from cheering for the NFL.