Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Why I walk...

I was six years old when my mother was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. I turn 30 in October. That's 24 years of living with the disease... I have few sweet memories of my mother before the diagnosis... when she was relatively healthy...

Growing up, I had some semblance of a normal childhood. But, as I grew older, and my mom's abilities decreased, my responsibilities increased... It was the same for my brothers, but on a different level.

I love my mother very much, but there are times I feel she was taken from me at an early age. Which brings me to my point...

The illness has taken a larger toll on my mother's health in recent years. Her mobility is severely decreased. Where she was walking around about 50% of the time a few years ago, she is pretty much wheelchair bound now. Her mental faculties have been deteriorating for many years now, but it seems that it is getting worse as of late. She needs more constant care.

Thanks to the local MS Society Chapter, she has had her insurance reinstated (no thanks to the insurance company at my dad's work, "pre-existing condition"), she has a nurse come by a few times in the week to help her shower while my dad is at work, and she gets to go to a local group program a few times a week which allows her to get out of the house. Without the help of the MS society, my mom would be living a house-bound existence and wouldn't be getting the medical care she needs.

To give back to the MS Society, I decided to participate in the local walk for my area this year. It takes place this Saturday. I invite my readers to do something to support this organization. My mom is not the only one they help. You can click on the "Walk MS" icon on the top-left of my blog, to sponsor me in my walk. You can check out their website to see if there are any events scheduled in your area that you can participate in. If you know anyone who is afflicted with the disease, do it in their honor. If you don't know anyone, do it in honor of my mom, Alberta.

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