My name is Ann Laurie and I’ve been married to my husband David for almost 20 years. We have 2 children, Jennifer 18 and David 17. We lead a somewhat normal life except for the fact that I have Multiple Sclerosis.
My journey began in 1987. I was an avid runner and looked forward to going out for that mile run everyday. There were a couple of times where I would trip and fall but thought nothing of it. I always thought it was me just being clumsy until one morning when I woke up I wasn’t able to move my left leg. This happened a couple of times before I decided to go to the doctors. After numerous tests over a 3 year period, a diagnosis of MS was made. I was scared of the unknown because MS affects everyone differently. I didn’t know what to expect so I just continued living life as usual. My children were young at that time and they needed their mom to be a mom. I went to every Little League, football and lacrosse game, dance recital and choral concert. I still to this day, attend their sporting events.
Ann pictured with her husband David and their daughter Jennifer and son David Jr.
My husband, children and extended family and friends are my support system. With them, I am able to think about the things I can do and not the things I can’t. I had to retrain myself into thinking it was okay to ask for help. With the support of the National MS Society I was able to get house cleaning assistance and I am now in the process of working with them to renovate my bathroom by having a roll-in shower installed. But the greatest gift was when my daughter was awarded the Petit Family Foundation Scholarship that provided financial assistance for college.
I guess you can say thatI have a “positive/negative” relationship with MS. In the negative, I could probably write for days about this disease but I would rather focus on the positive. It has made me stronger and more aware of how one should slow down and enjoy life. I learned to laugh at myself and bring laughter to others. No one knows what tomorrow will bring, so I am living all my tomorrows now.