Thanks for stopping by! I'm guessing you've heard I'm
participating in the 2007 MS Walk, and are considering making
a donation, or maybe even joining my team. So I'll give
you the link first, just in case you're in a hurry ;)
me / join my team
Simply follow the link and choose one of the options under
my picture there.
Why I walk
This is actually the fourth MS Walk I have participated in.
I signed up for my first walk the year after I was diagnosed
with MS myself. MS takes away control of many aspects
of a person's life. This lets me have a little control
back. It gives me a way to feel I'm doing a little something
towards helping to find a cure. MS is something I don't
want any friends or family to ever have to experience first-hand.
Come join me
really is fun. Hey, where else are you gonna happen
upon Darth Maul (not to mention a bunch of Stormtroopers and
some Jedis) just walking down the street? And the walk isn't
hard... about 3 miles on flat city sidewalk. Hey, if
I can do it, so can you. Here is some info from the
Walkers meet at the Grand Hall for check-in, warm beverages,
and a great breakfast, then move to Olympic Legacy Plaza
for pre-walk festivities and a short program. From there
we will kick-off the walk where the route heads North. Snacks,
festivities, and bathrooms are available at rest stops along
the route. We will end the Walk with a snack and a huge
It takes four to make a team, and last I looked we weren't
there yet. Hmm... it isn't even a "we" yet.
Hey, I don't want to walk alone! So bring yourself.
Bring more friends. Bring more family. It'll
be great! And official teams even get a space in the
TeamMS Village, as well as a team photo.
team Hobbits for Health? Well, originally this started
out as something I did with my Lord of the Rings group, Eru
Aeglirdor. Unfortunately, with the films done, interest
waned. But this is something I intend to continue doing,
and would like to continue with friend and family. But
the team name stays. I like it. Plus we can have
shirts with cute Hobbit feet on the back ;)
Yes, you should turn in a sponsor envelope, that's what it's
all about, really. But there is no required total donation,
so if you really don't want to ask for money, sponsor
yourself for a small amount. I'll appreciate your support
just for being there.
Why sponsor me
Hmm... does that mean I can't convince you to come join me
on this walk? Well, I understand, we all have busy lives.
(That is why I gave you advance notice, though :Þ) Anyway,
don't think that just because you can only spare a dollar
or two, that it won't help. Every bit counts!
Just think... if just 10 people could give only a dollar,
that's $10 right there. Not that I'm limiting you any
;) Just letting you know that it is all appreciated!
The National Multiple Sclerosis Society uses the money towards
both research (towards prevention, treatment, and a cure)
and towards local programs to help those with the disease.
You can check out their
website for more info about that. I'll just say
you'll be helping out a lot of people out there... not only
those with MS, but those who may potentially be diagnosed
in the future. Or maybe someday they'll be able to have
some sort of vaccine, and no one else will have to be diagnosed.
What is MS?
No, we aren't fighting against a software company.
Though there are some similarities with the way the operating
system randomly shuts down for no apparent reason. MS
is Multiple Sclerosis. (No, not Jerry's Kids... that's
MD - muscular dystrophy, a completely different type of disease.)
Multiple Sclerosis is an demyelinating autoimmune disease
that affects the central nervous system. Basically,
it's the body's own immune system going after the nerve covering
in the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves. It destroys
the myelin (the covering of the nerves) which leaves behind
scarring, or lesions. This disrupts the transmission
of nerve signals in the body.
So what kind of symptoms does this disease cause? Well,
that should be easy enough... what does the brain and spinal
cord control? Hmm...maybe not so easy... I guess that
is just about everything. The variety of symptoms is
one reason the disease can be so hard to diagnose. The
symptoms that are present vary with the location of the legions
in the brain and CNS. Some symptoms are more apparent,
such as difficulty in walking, and vision problems.
(Though often those with walking and gait problems are written
off as drunks!) However, there is an extensive list
of symptoms not so readily apparent.
One of the most frustrating things about MS are the number
of people saying (or thinking) 'oh, you look great, there's
nothing wrong with you!' They think that the person
with MS is just being lazy, or that the person just needs
to put their mind to it and live life normally. (Check
out the Multiple
Sclerosis Sucks site for more helpful things people with
MS hear all the time.) Problem is, there are so many symptoms
that can't be seen. Pamela Martin writes in Invisible
MS: Now You See It...Now You Don't
It may be surprising for the uninitiated to learn that
some of my worst days with MS are the ones where my symptoms
are less visible....
...Try holding down a job when you feel like iron anchors
are tied to your ankles, the soles of your feet are burning,
your eyes are perpetually crossed, the sensation of worms
are crawling up and down your leg, and your mental acuity
goes on vacation without warning.
Just a few of the "invisible" symptoms of MS are
changes in cognitive function, dizziness, vertigo, chronic
pain, spasticity, depression and other emotional problems,
tingling, pins and needles, or loss of sensation, and fatigue.
In fact, I know one of the things I hate hearing most is 'oh,
I know, I was up late too'. Trust me, it is not the
same. Wanna know a bit more about MS lassitude? Check
out the Spoon
Theory. It's written by someone with Lupus, another
autoimmune disease with many symptoms in common. And
it's the best description I've found that can maybe give someone
a little idea about the fatigue.
is the MS Ribbon of Hope?
From the NMSS website: "Because multiple sclerosis
impacts people's lives in vastly different ways, and its debilitating
symptoms are often unseen, we are promoting the MS Ribbon
of Hope. As the prism ribbon seems to change color as it reflects
light, so it symbolizes the unpredictable, life altering affects
MS has on people's lives. The ribbon is also symbolic of the
hope the Society provides as we press forward toward our goal
to end the devastating effects of MS—forever. We hope
people will wear it often."