Missed the first parts of the story? Start at So it begins...
May 28, 2008. A day that will live in my personal infamy. I went to the neurologist with GH. By this date (remember, this all started on May 9, 2008), I had regained a great deal of my functionality on my left side and the vertigo was gone. I felt well, although apprehensive about this appointment. I was also excited, because GH and I were leaving the next day to go to New York City on vacation to celebrate our tenth wedding anniversary. We financed the trip by colloecting from all those who bet we wouldn't last ten years. ;)
The doctor enters the examination room, introduces himself and then asks me, "What did your doctor tell you?" I repeated exactly what the nurse had said, that the MRI was indicative of multiple sclerosis. He affirmed that this was correct and proceeded to show me the MRI photos. The lesions were lighting up like a Christmas tree. Even my untrained and defective eyes could see this. Speaking of my interesting eyes, the neuro was totally fascinated by my eyes. I guess it's not often doctors get to see someone like me. I mean, I think my optic nerves have appeared in medical textbooks. Shouldn't I get some royalties for that?
Anyway, I was put through a battery of neurological coordination tests. The results were not nearly as horrid as the one in the urgent care facility, but there were still deficiencies on my left side. The doctor was also concerned about my left eye (that's the REALLY bad one). He thought the pupil was not as reactive as it should be. This concerned me quite a bit, so I made a mental note to make an appointment with an ophthomologist when I returned from NYC. That is one thing I do not mess around with or procrastinate about. Although optic nerve hypoplasia is not a degenerative condition, I always am very proactive about my eye care. That was the most upsetting part of the appointment.
The rest of it was just discussing disease-modifying treatment and any questions I had. The doctor suggested Copaxone, and since my mother had been on that medication for about seven years without a relapse, I wholeheartedly agreed. He assured me that they would make the arrangements and I would start after I returned from the trip.
There was a humorous moment during the appointment. The neuro was very positive in assuring me that I could still have children. He was all, "You're still young enough; MS will not keep you from having a baby." I was cracking up, because GH and I had decided early in our marriage that we were not going to have kids. I was trying to explain this to him, but he didn't get it at first. So I had to break it down. "Listen, GH is 23 years older than me. He has three grown kids and two grandchildren. We would have to go to extraordinary measure like IVF to conceive and we did not want to go that route." Then he backed off. I mean, I thought it was nice that he was concerned, but enough already!
So, there it was. I had my official diagnosis. Wow. Actually, I should say we had our diagnosis, because GH was there every step of the way, even knowing my greatest fears before I articulated them.
Of course, we had an obligation that night. GH was in rehearsal for The Chosen and I was stage manager. Before we went to rehearsal, we shed some tears in the car. Then during rehearsal, the guy who was best man in our wedding (who was also in the show) had this scene that is just heartbreaking to see. I just wept throughout that whole scene. It was very cathartic for me.
We went home afterward, packed the last bit of luggage, went to bed and prepared for our trip.
Tune in next time for Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da...
6 days ago