Thank you so much for focusing on Multiple Sclerosis yesterday. I was very excited to hear Montel Williams share his experience as I have had difficulty finding positive role models with MS with whom I can relate. I sympathize with his depression and difficulty adapting to the uncertainties of MS. I also appreciate his openness in describing the disease and the symptoms he suffers. His discussion surely helped many people to understand the hidden difficulties of MS.
I did finish watching the show yearning for advice from someone who has genuinely accepted the disease and found a positive outlook. Montel’s depression left me unsure of his advice. I wish for him joy and peace in this life despite his challenges.
Dr Oz was inspirational with his compassion and sound advice. I see that without much guidance following diagnosis I naturally proceeded to follow his suggestion and consumed myself with learning about the disease.
My diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis in June of 2008 completely blindsided me. Even after my body became numb from the bra-line down for a few weeks, I still thought of myself as an extremely healthy 37 year old woman. I exercise regularly, monitor my weight, eat organic food and locally grown produce, and try to balance life.
I sincerely thought I must have a pinched nerve. At the time I actively participated in a gymnastics class each week, and despite fatigue I ran a 12K a few days after half my body numbed. My diagnosis came quickly following what I have since learned to detect as an exacerbation.
Immediately following my diagnosis, I underwent steroid therapy that left me a wreck emotionally and kept me home from work. I consider it happenstance that your program aired a week of shows focused on health. Among them was the incredibly inspirational Kris Carr with liver cancer who affected me deeply with her attitude that we’re all dying, some of us just have more information. Randy Pausch, with dignity, underscored the fact that it can always be worse.
I now live with on and off symptoms including pain in my hips and neck, fatigue, insomnia, memory difficulties, numbness and lack of coordination. I take a disease modifying drug – a daily injection – to hopefully slow the progression of my MS. I’ve given up the weekly gymnastics class, but I have a gym mat at home so I can stretch, do backbends, back walkovers and handstands. I walk two miles with my husband each day. On good days, I have to slow down to keep pace with him. On bad days, he has to slow down to keep pace with me.
I work full time in a demanding field and actively work at keeping a balanced state of mind. I’m still in a quest to achieve balance and make sense of my new reality. As such, I do hope you’ll consider a follow up program with average people coping with MS and specialists in the field.
I appreciate the information on your website directing people to the National MS Society web page. Televising the organization and its purpose would have been truly appreciated to support ongoing research for MS prevention and cures. The organization also provides an amazing amount of support to MS patients, family and caregivers.
Thank you, Oprah and staff, for your ongoing commitment to be a positive influence in our lives succeeds in making our lives better.