I was born in West Germany on 11/28/58 into an Army family who moved around the United States and Germany. A Dr. in Germany told my mother I could have MS in '78 after losing the strength in my right leg and the feeling in my right. They diagnosed me with Transverse Myelitis I was officially diagnosed in '94. Have 1 boy (4/17/92) and 1 girl (11/17/95) who live with their mother.
Currently on Disability and live with my wife, Tammy Gail Baker. Please check out the MS website: http://swvamssupport.org
Amber (11/17/95) Me (11/28/58) Ryan (04/17/92) like his shirt "Beware Of Baker"
Again the three of us
My father Myself My step-mother
Bradley Richard Baker (my bro) who passed away from complications of MS. May 15, 1956 - May 24,2007 (Please go to the Southwest Virginia MS Support Group website and read my tribute to my bro and watch the slide show.)
He cut the ribbon to start the 2007 MS walk in the D.C. area. He received over $10,000 in donations for the walk.
Our father was asked to cut the ribbon in 2008.
Me and MS
I think my first exacerbation was in a Cross Country meet when I had to walk up a hill "dragging" my left leg along with me in 1977 (I did finish the meet though). The next time was when I was in the tub (taking what I thought was a warm bath) when I did not feel any heat on my left side. I poked at my muscles on my left leg and did not feel anything. When I got out I told my parents about it. We went to the local dispensary (in Germany) and they checked me out and then sent me to Landstul Hospital. I had also lost the strength in my right leg.
The doctors there told me I had an "inflammation of the spinal cord" (now what I know to be Transverse Myelitis). They told my mother that it could be Multiple Sclerosis. Back then, in 1978 there was no way to tell for sure. So I went on with my life.
In 1994 I felt the same things occurring. I lost the feeling in the left side of my body. An MRI was done and it showed lesions on my spine and in my brain. That was my second exacerbation. There were 15 and a half years between my first and second exacerbation.
I started to see a nurse practitioner in the Washington, D.C. area (I was living at the time). I received solumedrol and got better.
Since 1994 I have had 18 exacerbations. Usually coming back to where I was before the exacerbation. I have a tingling in my hands and feet as if they were asleep. I could deal with that and did. But this last time was my worse. I am now using a walker or a wheelchair depending on where I am going and what I am doing. I am doing therapy and each day I get better although there are some bad days.
My brother had MS also. He passed away on May 24th 2007, nine days after he turned 51, from complications of MS. At the lunch before he passed away he was talking about how much more money he was going to make at the 2008 walk. He had made over $10,000 in for the 2007 walk. I guess that is why he cut the ribbon to start the walk. My father, being a retired General knew how to get people motivated (it was easy for him to get us motivated-if we did anything wrong all he had to do is look at us. We were the grass and he was the lawn mower...lol), was on the Board of Trustees for the National Capital Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society in Northern Virginia for seven years. He wanted to find a cure for both of his boys but God called my brother.
As my mother would say, "This is what God gave you. You can deal with it". So lets all do what my mom said and deal with it because we can.
Mar 28, 2008
Jan 31, 2012