A Single Mom with MS Speaks Out
We love to share patient stories with you! Hearing from others who understand what you are going through can be key to surviving and thriving during this difficult MS journey. Today, we bring you the story of Cynthia.
When were you diagnosed with MS and what was the first thing you did after you found out? Honestly, I just laughed at first because it was more of a relief to know I wasn’t crazy like other people had made me believe. Then the reality kicked it. I was a 24-year-old single mom with MS.
What is something good that came out of your MS diagnosis? It reminded me of how strong I truly am. Encouraged me to be a better/healthier person not just for myself. It made me a better mother. How has MS affected your daily life? It’s hard to keep up sometimes with my now seven-year-old. It’s also tough during the summer when all she wants to do is be outside, but obviously the heat doesn’t give me a whole lot of room to play outdoors.
What is the greatest achievement you have done since being diagnosed and how were you able to achieve it? I was almost 200 lbs when I first found out, and I changed my whole diet and got physical again. I ended up losing 64 lbs. I also realized that I didn’t want to do anything career wise other than cooking. So, I’ve been working towards that.
Any other thoughts you would like to share? I was 24. A single mother. It was scary and I really didn’t think I was going to be able to overcome my fear and anxiety. I did though because I started looking at the bigger picture. I introduced myself to the MS community and found it was easier to manage with people who got it. It allowed me to not have to suffer in silence or struggle to help it make sense to the people in my life who thought I was being overly dramatic.
What advice would you give to someone just finding out they have MS? Treat yourself kindly. Take a self care day and ask all the questions. Look for a community online or nearby. And know that it’s not some thing that will define who you are but can help you become an even better version of yourself.
Want more patient stories? Here are a few to check out:
-- New MS Diagnosis: A Conversation with Lina
-- Attitude is Everything: Tennesha's Story
-- MS Warrior: Marti Hines Represents Women of Color