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Monday, May 13, 2013

I WALKED the MS Walk in Frankenmuth this year.... #MS #walkMS

Pin It Now! I WALKED the 25th Annual MS Walk in Frankenmuth,MI this year on May 11,2013...



   You may ask yourself why this is such a big deal, people do these walks all the time? Well here is my answer. For the first time since I was diagnosed with MS almost 7 years ago, I was able to walk without any assistance, the first year I was diagnosed I was the Walk Ambassador at the location we chose to "walk". I wanted to use my power wheelchair, but the battery decided to act up at the very beginning but I was determined to cross that finish line. With my family beside me I walked ever so slowly the 2.5 miles, foot drop and all, with my loft strand crutches. I had not gotten my double leg braces yet and it was to say the least a challenge but I did it, paid dearly for days after but I did it. Did I feel accomplished, a little but more worn out than anything. The next couple years I chose to volunteer instead, whether it was cheering at the finish line or helping register walkers at check in. The last couple years I did not even go as I was frustrated, you see I was well to a point was still not healthy enough to walk the walk. I was still dependent on my power scooter for long distances. You see when I was Diagnosed years ago I went through a ton of ups and downs, power wheelchair for daily living, a walker with wheels and a seat for when I needed to sit and rest, double leg braces and loft strand crutches to a cane and a power scooter when needed.

   Lots of medication and many hours of both physical therapy and counseling and I am today the healthiest I have been in over 8 years. Now to say I am symptom free would be I would be lying. I still have symptoms from my MS that effect my life everyday, but they do not stop me from living or being active. I want to keep moving I do not want my MS to stop me. I still take meds everyday but have been able to cut down on some of them and stop some altogether. I contribute much of this to my new healthier lifestyle. I believe deep down that much of the JUNK in our foods was not helping my battle with MS and may have even caused my dormant MS to come alive back when I was just 30 years old. I was the Mom of 3 young and active boys, but I could not walk from the kitchen to the bathroom without falling over. I could not hold a glass without shaking and spilling my drink all over myself. To say it caused me to be depressed would be an understatement. I had a choice back then. Accept it or Fight it. I chose to Fight it. What I did not know back then was there was a whole lot more to it than just wanting to fight this Monster that is called MS. I needed to find my place in this world. I needed to find Faith!! I needed to get right with GOD ! The problem is that was not all. I have learned so much on this journey and this year I think I have found the missing component to my wellness.

  You see over the years of being sick I let it be my excuse to why I have gained a ton of weight. Not really an excuse I really could not be active, and I still have limitations especially with Summer heat coming,(MS(my MS) and hot weather are not friends) but I am not going to let it stop me there are other ways to be active, inside at the GYM or in the POOL. I just wasn't smart enough back then. The other thing was I was still putting lots of that JUNK they call food into my body. Well since starting my weightloss journey this year I have eliminated lots of that JUNK from my eating and I am so much healthier. I have learned what triggers certain symptoms and I know to stay away from them. Not only am I healthier for it but my family is too.

   So in preparation for the MS Walk this year I have been walking several days a week to know I could do it. So on Saturday Alyx and I set out on a chilly morning here in MI  and went and walked  the walk was 3.79 miles from start to finish and even with stopping at all the stop lights to cross the city streets and walking with a crowd of over 1000 walkers we finished that walk in 1 hour and 37 minutes. You know what? We did not even stop there, after we ate lunch at the party afterwards we went to the outlet mall and walked there too. When I got home that night I plugged my BodyMedia in and I had walked more steps that day than I ever had I beat my best which was just over 12000 by over 4000. My total steps for Saturday were 15788. Now some of you might not think that is much, but for someone who could not walk 100 steps in one day 7 years ago that is HUGE. If you live with any kind of chronic illness you will understand how HUGE that is...
 

   I amaze myself everyday with what I can now accomplish, but I also do not take it for granted as I know one day I could wake up and that could all be gone in a blink of an eye. This is why this walk this year was so important to me. I did it with no assistance of any kind and I may be able to do it again next year and then again I may not. There are no guarantees for me, MS can rob me of my ability to walk anytime it sees fit. So I can say I accomplished this and I can cross it off my bucket list. I can say I did it. I may never be able to say that again. With God's Grace I hope I can but if it doesn't happen at least I have no regrets. It was sobering, when a Mom walked up behind me and grabbed my arm and asked how long I had been DX with MS. Her son had just been dx last year and he was not handling it well. I walked and talked to her for over 2 miles, letting her know with FAITH he could get better but it takes so much more than that. I told her I had been where he was and I know it is hard. She hugged me and thanked me and told God to bless me. It was sobering to see so many start off walking and shortly after be rescued by a wheelchair pushing family member standing by or the golf cart that was riding along side of us just in case you need a lift back. It was sobering the amount of people not able to walk at all, riding the whole way or not there at all because they are now bed ridden. This MONSTER called MS robs each of us that carries the DX of the freedom to know tomorrow will be just like today. Walking helps us get one step closer to a cure. There are so many people that are DX everyday with this horrible monster even a little boy as young as 3 that lives here in MI. The youngest to ever be stricken with the MS MONSTER. There is nobody to compare him to, there is no research to help reassure his Mom. God willing I will walk again next year, won't you walk with me?? Help find a cure for MS. Simply by walking...







2 thoughts shared:

Emilee Roberts said...

Congrats on your accomplishment! I have Fibro, which I know isn't the same, but I have felt the same feelings of defeat and accomplishment when I decided to not let it hold me back. Way to go!

Sara @ Embracing Destiny said...

Awesome! I'm proud of you! =0)