My name is Shannelle Garcia, I am Adam Garcia's wife and we have two beautiful boys together and are expecting our 3rd child. Adam is the breadwinner of the family as the manager of Jiffy Lube in Santa Fe, and I stay at home and take care of our children. On May 10th, Adam was giving our kids a bath and suddenly became very ill, he was vomiting uncontrollably, looked as if he was having a seizure and was very weak and couldn't walk or even sit up. I called 911 and he was taken to the hospital by ambulance.
The doctors treated him and sent him home, saying it was nothing more than an "anxiety attack". We listened and came home. The next two days he was very dizzy and thought he was having a side effect from the meds they gave him at the hospital so we went back in. They again told him it was nothing to worry about, gave him more meds for the dizziness and sent him home. Two days later, he suddenly became very ill again and I rushed him back to the ER. This time they listened and ran more tests. After a CT scan and two MRIs showed some unusual brain lesions, they transferred him to Rust Medical Center where he could see a Neurologist.
When we got there, they told us that they were confused because his symptoms were unusual, but they believed he had Multiple Sclerosis. Multiple sclerosis is a degenerative brain disease in which the body's immune system attacks the protective coating around the nerves in the brain. When the nerves are exposed, they misfire and can cause a wide variety of symptoms such as pain, numbness, loss of vision, loss of muscle control, and in Adams case so far, severe vertigo, vomiting, and issues with his equilibrium or sense of balance, which causes him to stumble or fall when he walks.
They did a lumbar puncture, another MRI, and officially diagnosed him the following day. At this point, he was so ill that he could barely walk. He was put on a round of high dose, intravenous steroids for 3 days to stop what they said was a flare up of his multiple sclerosis, and then they sent him home to wait on another appointment with the Neurologist. The next few days were rough, and he developed a severe headache from a spinal fluid leak caused by the lumbar puncture. His dizziness and balance started to get better, but the headache was debilitating. We tried for days to get him in to have what they call a blood patch to fix the leak and make his headache stop but they sent us away and never called.
On Sunday, May 28th, all his symptoms returned again suddenly and I rushed him back to the hospital. He again was so ill that he was uncontrollably vomiting and was so weak, dizzy and off balance that he was unable to walk. They finally did the blood patch and admitted him again to do another round of intravenous steroids. He is home now and resting and will have physical therapy to try to regain his ability to walk without assistance and work through the vertigo. He will be seeing a neurologist to find out the next step and to decide on treatment.
Throughout all of this, Adam has been unable to work and at this point, we are not sure when or if he will ever be able to return to work. Our hope is that he recovers from this flare and is in remission for a very long time so we can get back to the life we lived before all of this happened. In the meantime, Adams medical bills are accumulating and our day to day expenses are still there and our bank account is draining quickly. It is hard for our family to ask for money, but we are quickly running out of options. If you have it in your heart to give, truly anything helps!
Adam is young, strong, and has otherwise always been healthy, so this is a complete shock to him and to our whole family. We appreciate all of your thoughts, prayers and well wishes during this difficult time. Our kids are having a hard time adjusting to life with a daddy who is not able to run and play with them like he always has, so prayers for them are especially appreciated!
We truly cannot thank you all enough!
The Garcia family
- Ben, Laura and Addison Schmitz
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