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Kristie’s Fight Like a Girl Story (Multiple Sclerosis)

Kristie's Story (MS) At seven years old I absolutely knew what I wanted to do with my life: become a performer and maybe head for Broadway! A basement renovation in our home provided enough open space for my first stage, and I loved performing for my family. I’d sing at the top of my lungs and dance my heart out.

When I was 18 I entered Syracuse University’s musical theater program with my dream of Broadway still in sight. But when I took classes in ballet and modern dance my coordination was not as strong and precise as it needed to be, and I could not figure out why. At times my head felt clouded, almost like it was filled with cotton. Even though agencies in New York were giving me a chance to audition, I was physically unable to perform.

I eventually put my Broadway dreams on hold and moved to Atlanta with my high school sweetheart, Michael. Soon after he proposed, and we started to plan for our wedding and our life together as a married couple. That’s when I noticed that my legs were becoming numb and I was experiencing a pins-and-needles sensation in my feet. I had heard people talk about getting cold feet before marriage, but they didn’t mean literally, did they? I went to see the doctor and an MRI test confirmed I was living with multiple sclerosis (MS). I was overwhelmed with feelings of fear, panic and denial. How was I going to get through this?

In spite of my diagnosis, I kept trying to pretend everything was “normal.” I was such a good actress that even Michael, the person closest to me, rarely noticed my efforts to hide problems with my walking and coordination. I didn’t talk to anyone about my symptoms because they were too difficult to explain. But with this news I thought my dreams of performing were over forever. A few years later, I had an unexpected opportunity to perform with a local producer/songwriter. The lyrics talked about doing what makes you happy, and following your dreams no matter how many challenges you face. I fought my fears and sang like I had nothing to lose, and the feeling was amazing. It was the push I needed to re-ignite my passion for music. I went on to record my first album, “Believe.” I also wrote and directed a short film, “The Show Must Go On,” to help others understand what it is like to live with MS.

I found that when my heart was opened once again by my love for music, it freed my mind as well. I was less afraid – and more focused on what I could do. I realized that denial was holding me back and decided to educate myself about MS. I saw how much I could still accomplish. Instead of avoiding my doctor, I started to listen to him about treatment options that could help me protect my health. I also got more involved with MS organizations. Most importantly, I found the confidence to conquer my biggest dream of all: becoming a mom. Michael and I now have a son, Kingston, and a daughter, Giabella.

I wrote “Dreams: My Journey with Multiple Sclerosis” to encourage people living with this disease to use their passion to overcome denial and help others understand the impact of MS. I hope that this story will help others on their journey with MS. Download a free copy today for you or someone you know who needs help getting started on their dreams at www.DreamsTheEbook.com.

Kristie Salerno Kent
Georgia
Submitted 7-15-2013

The informational content of this article 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.

This article is intended to convey general educational information and should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.

One comment

  1. Yvonne Davis

    I was a patient diagnosed with MS and I’m living proof that you can be cured from multiple sclerosis. I was diagnosed with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis in 2020, after finally receiving the MRI I had been waiting on for years. The MRI showed that I had a lot of lesions on my spine, more than I could count, but only three on my brain, two of which looked active. The neurologist explained that the lesions on my spine attribute to my physical disability. My mobility was seriously affected afterwards so I was glad I could rest on my sofa, I would have struggled to walk out of the hospital and the car ride home would have been painful. I was cured naturally with the use of Dr Sims Gomez Herbs A Clinic with model Herbal Formula, within three weeks I was recovering. In 2021 I began seeing Dr Gomez Sims, who specializes in internal and pulmonary medicine at drsimsgomezherbs.com).

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