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30 is my new 20!

Multiple sclerosis

Diagnosed at 17, I didn’t know what I was in store for. I had no idea what Multiple Sclerosis was and I didn’t know that I would need to readjust my whole life. In 2009 I was at college doing my A-levels, but one day I got double vision while walking through a shopping center and that was the start of it all!

Through the years I’ve had many trials and tribulations, I’ve had many things taken from me, my speech, my ability to feed myself, and my mobility. Every symptom and relapse I have had has had a lasting effect on me. This disease has completely changed who I am. For a long time I stayed inside I didn’t have much communication with other people and I didn’t go outside, it was a very sad time. I didn’t know what my purpose was and what I could offer to this world, disability was such a strange place to be but I found a whole community of people online I could relate to. I believe that I’m going through these trials for the purpose to share with other people, uplifting people, and showing that even though the dark times there’s always worse! Life is not over it just gets really tough at times but we can still do it. I’m 30 now so I have missed a large chunk of my adolescence, But I aim to make my 30s much more considered. Multiple Sclerosis has no cure! treatments for the disease have great side effects and for me, nothing really tamed the beast.

Finding something new

I tried two DMTs (disease-modifying treatments) diet, holistic therapy, and exercise over the years, however, they all failed to make managing this disease any easier. 2021 I was put forward for a stem cell transplant to help halt disease progression. The treatment is aggressive and involves chemotherapy to clear out my immune system. The aim is to completely start again without multiple sclerosis. I spent three weeks in hospital for the process and to start recovering, was intense, to say the least. Things feel harder at the moment because I’m weaker and less able than I was before, but my optimism for the future outweighs my current struggle. I have found documenting my journey and blogging has really helped me express what I’m going through and show other people that there is someone else in the same position that they can talk to or get advice from. We won’t know for several years whether or not the transplant has had its designed effect but until then I’ll continue advocating for MS, blogging, and trying my very best to smile.