I am a mother of 5 and grandmother of one precious 5yr-old girl. I am a veterinarian and adoptive mom of 3 cats and one dog. I work part-time, as my husband is also a veterinarian and runs the practice day to day. I also homeschool my youngest two children, girls, ages 12 and 13. My other children are all adults now--one of whom has returned home to live with us again! That is my handsome 1 year old nephew, Benjamin, in the picture with me! I grew up in Kentucky (a beautiful land) and most of my family still live there. I love the Lord, Jesus, who is with me everywhere. Blessings to All! JT
Now for my MS blog:
MS first made a notable impact on my life in March of 2002. It was spring break and my three youngest daughters and my older of the three's best friend had gone to the beach on Lido Key to enjoy some sun and fun. Everything had seemed fine until one night I awoke in the middle of the night to find my right arm totally numb. I mean, it was as if it did not even belong to my body at all! I could not feel it nor move it. I had to pick it up with my other hand to move it off my chest to the side (so I was not lying on it when I awoke, which might could have explained it if I had been and temporarily cut off circulation). I began to rub it in an attempt to bring back feeling. After a few minutes I began to feel a tingling sensation and then a stabbing pain in my pinkie finger. Over a few more minutes the feeling returned and once again I could move my arm and it felt like it was a part of me. The pinkie throbbed a bit in the area of the middle knuckle. I went on back to sleep. Upon awakening I had forgotten all about it until I noticed the pain in my pinkie was still there. It did appear slightly red in the knuckle area and had the sensation of being swollen, though it was difficult to see. I began to worry about Rheumatoid Arthritis right off since that condition runs in my family. The next couple of days, I began to feel slightly feverish and very fatigued. I thought I was coming down with a virus or perhaps that it was related to my finger which was still painful in my pinkie joint. As the week wore on, I began to feel other throbbing aches in other joints (or what I thought was joints at the time). A toe began to throb, followed by a finger on the opposite hand. As soon as I returned home I went to see my family physician. He did some blood work to check for RA and in the meantime told me to rest my pinkie with a splint (which was still the worst painful area) and take tylenol. The tylenol did nothing for it at all. The blood work all came back normal but as the days wore on the pain worsened and spread, always remaining symmetrical. I was then referred to a rheumatologist. By now it was mid April and I was very ill, running a constant low grade fever, with severe pain in my hands and feet, particularly in my wrists, ankles, fingers, toes, and arches of my feet. At this point the pain was more of an aching/throbbing sensation. It was constant 24 hours a day. I was unable to sleep and had lost my appetite, not even wanting a cup of coffee in the mornings which I normally loved. To make a long story short, for about three months I saw the rheumatologist, undergoing every test under the sun, but nothing was found, although I continued to loose weight, have pain, insomnia and no appetite. My rheumatologist began to doubt that I had any sort of rheumatologic disease since all testing, including a bone scan to look for inflammation in my joints, was negative. She did not discount my pain or fatigue however, and felt that perhaps I had fibromyalgia, although I did not have the classic pressure point pain areas. During this time I was given ambien to sleep and ultram for the pain. The ultram was a life saver in that it gave me enough relief to keep me from losing my mind, however, the fatigue was still severe and my weight plummeted to 93#. I would leave in tears each visit because each time we came up empty for a diagnosis or any means to help me get my life back. I felt like I was dying and indeed began to think that I must have a cancer somewhere in my body. I was sent for a total body PET scan and it too came back negative. Then in July, I had two migraines that were much more severe than my normal migraines with some unusual (for me) symptoms. This prompted my rheumatologist to send me to a neurologist. As it happens my neurologist's wife suffers from Rheumatoid Arthritis and at first he too thought I had RA that was just not showing positive yet on blood testing as he said the symptoms and where I was hurting were pretty classic, however in light of the weight loss and headaches, he felt an MRI to rule out a brain tumor would be a good idea, though he assured me he really felt it would be negative as well as my neurologic exam was basically normal outside of hyper reflexes. He told me to keep a migraine log, gave me new migraine medication and said he would see me back in 3 months to go over the log and he would go over the MRI then unless there was anything found on it of significance and then they would call. The day after my MRI I was called by his nurse asking me if I could come in to speak with him about the results, but she would say no more. I had to take my young daughters with me that day as my husband was at work. When he saw my daughters in the waiting room with me, he suggested they stay with the receptionist so we could better discuss it. Of course, by now I knew something bad was up, but MS had never been mentioned by anyone up to this point and so I was thinking it had to be a tumor... but I knew someone who had just had a brain tumor removed that was benign and she was going to be fine so I was hopeful it would not be any worse than that. Imagine my surprise when he began to ask me to think back to any times that I might have had episodes of unusual occurances of a neurological nature. At first I could think of nothing. He then told me that the MRI strongly suggested that I have MS. All of the films were up on screens in his office and he took me though each showing me the multiple lesions, a few of them quite large, though none were enhancing. More to come.....
Feb 13, 2008
Mar 06, 2012