My name is Hannah. I am 16, and I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (Relapsing Remitting) on February 15, 2018.
January 22nd was the day I first realized something was wrong. I had just gone on a run the day before, and waking up that morning was terrifying.
I had woken up with my first flare up, complete and heavy numbness from my waist down. I tried my best to not be too paranoid so I brushed it off and told myself it was just my muscles being sore.
Three days passed, no change, so I brought it up to my parents. After that I went to the ER, local doctor, and eventually a neurologist. It was there that I scheduled my first MRI scan. After about three different scans, I went back to hear my results, in hopes of it not being bad.
Anxiously waiting for the doctor to return, he walked through the door and began to tell me what the results were.
I was diagnosed with MS.
Immediately I lost a tremendous amount of hope and thought I wouldn’t be able to live the life I had before my first flare up. I was scared I wouldn’t be able to play softball, workout, have the same social life , or anything normal I did before hand. Being only 15 at the time, I was put in a very difficult situation. Trying to focus on high school and having a non-curable and unpredictable illness thrown at me was what seemed to be unbearable.
Since then I have had a lumbar puncture (with a crazy week-long spinal headache), put on my treatment which is Plegridy, begun giving myself an injection every two weeks, and have been volunteering for test studies for Multiple Sclerosis to help with research!
A list of symptoms I’ve experienced from MS are numbness in my limbs, blurred vision, poor balance, tingling, pins and needles, an MS hug, sharp pains throughout my body, fatigue, insomnia, and more.
During one instance, I had woken up with another symptom, being the left half of my torso was a different sensation compared to my right. Very sensitive to cold and hot temperatures. But on the bright side, the numbness in both of my legs has faded as well as many of the symptoms I’ve experienced.
I have been through a lot in the past few months. I have had ups and downs. I have had bad days and amazing days. I have had people support me and people not think I was sick.
But recently I have been looking only at the positive, and I can finally say I am genuinely happy again. Sure I have MS, sure there’s no cure, but I know I can get through it and beat it.
I’m not going to let this illness take over my life and ruin my happiness. I’m a strong believer in the idea that not having any stress present lessens the chance of new symptoms appearing. When I’m not too worried about everything, I seem to feel much better physically and mentally, and that just makes it seem as if I do not have MS.
To anyone going through anything similar, I know you can get through it, and I know you have all of the strength necessary to overcome it. I am rooting for you!!!
Stay positive, and don’t let anyone or anything take you down!
This story is intended to convey a personal experience and, because every person’s experience is unique, should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.