Friends are angels that lift us to our feet when our wings have trouble remembering how to fly.
I’m so thankful for all the support I receive. Not just from my family and friends but from complete strangers miles away. Tip to ALL of those battling Multiple Sclerosis: please, please, please connect with other MSers online. Search up MS Groups on Facebook or look up the hashtag #MultipleSclerosis on Instagram and Twitter and build a relationship with the thousands of users who are going through the same thing as you! It really helps. You get 24/7 support and it helps you to not feel so lonely. Thank God I did that because I wouldn’t have the strength I have today and that began with Kellie Barker. Here’s her story:
“My story begins summer of 2003 when I first got sick. My symptoms were double vision, extreme vertigo & ear pains. I went to the hospital and they tested me for MS, meningitis & checked for brain tumor. Everything was negative and told me this was a one time thing. They pumped me with steroids and I went on my merry way. A few months later when I started my senior year of high-school I had the same symptoms again just a little worse. They tested me again for MS & meningitis. The test came back positive for MS through a second spinal tap in only a few months. I now have some back issues because of this. January 2004 is when I started my on going treatment of Copaxone. I had a relapse November 2004, same symptoms as my first two attacks. Then December 2005 I had complete paralysis on the right side of my body. All attacks I’ve ever had were fixed with taking prednisone. I got about 90% of my usage of my right arm and leg after swimming the few months after I felt better, plus I continue to workout and it seems to make me feel better. I haven’t had a relapse since. Of course I have my bad days but nothing where I needed medical attention. When I first got diagnosed I went into a depression and I gained a lot of weight but I’ve turned my life around. I wish I had the friends I have now when I first got diagnosed with MS because I might of done a few things differently. Meeting Kayla and Randy Patrick have really changed my life and how I treat my MS. I needed more positivity in my life and I’m grateful for the friendships I’ve made over the past few years!”
I decided to name one of my bracelets after Kels – that’s what I call her. She was not only one of the first person’s that I spoke to when I first got diagnosed but she grew into becoming one of the best of friends I have ever had. I was new at MS. I didn’t know much and being new at something can be scary. She was so patient with me and answered every single question I had. No matter what time it was and it didn’t matter if she was busy, she always had a comforting response and genuinely cared about me. When I began Keep S’Myelin in March 2013, she was so loyal and I always got notifications that went: @PurpleFairy319 liked your photo.
Even though our favorite hockey teams are rivals in the NHL, cough cough the Leafs are better, I still wouldn’t be able to be where I am today without having her positive impact on me. Oh, I forgot to mention – don’t mess with her when it comes to NY Rangers, NY Giants, NY Mets and basically any sport involving NY.. except NY Islanders (she can’t stand the team). She supports me, she listens to me and she accepts me for who I am. We have virtual “Starbuck Dates” and I hope one day we can meet in person so we can physically go together to Starbucks and order Venti Caramel Macchiatos together.
Thank you Kellie for being one of the best of friends I ever had. One day we’ll buy a house and fill it with kittens and be the crazy cat ladies we are. Don’t ever give up the fight!