I'm Jacqueline(Jacqui) Given and I'm here to share the transition I've been going through since 2012.
I was officially diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis at 30 years old in July 2016. At the time I was working two jobs, Publix Super Market Deli in the A.M. and serving tables at night. However, unbeknownst to me, I had been experiencing symptoms since 2012 which were gradually worsening until the day I found myself in the E.R. with a club foot.
Initially in 2012 I had experienced a numbness in a single side of my torso that would come and go. Then I slowly noticed I could no longer keep slip-on shoes on my feet while riding my bike, it took less than a year for me to switch to something with laces 100% of the time. I slowly noticed I was shaking all the time- to the point of interfering with my writing. My balance and walking declined so quickly that not being able to ride a bike by summer 2014 was the light bulb that something was wrong and was when I could no longer live on my own.
Since the summer I got diagnosed I've experienced a rapid decline. I can no longer walk on my own due to imbalance, loss of mobility and muscle. On a daily basis I experience extreme fatigue, heat intolerance, numbness, tremors, muscle spasms, speech impediment, bladder problems and cognitive impairment especially while experiencing an over stimulation to my nervous system,ie- loud noises, heat, multitasking. This has made my work schedule almost nill. I do work up to 8 hours a week split into two days. (On days and weeks when I can manage more I truly feel like a super hero!)
And that brings me to why I'm here writing about my inability to truly provide for myself at the moment. Even with insurance, and besides initial hospital bills, the details of expenses for MRI's, copays, unexpected hospital stays, out patient infusions, medications- it becomes exhausting and overwhelming while still trying to understand the metamorphosis of my body.
So here I am asking for help, which in itself is odd to me- however here we are with a platform available to ask and share and grow and connect with people. If you can spare anything, I’d be extremely thankful. Thank you- for taking the time to read this.
- john periale
- Steven Avelar De Oliveira
- Susan & Bart McCarthy
- Lori Lopez
- Gigi Allen
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