I am taking part in the 2024 MS Super Splash, to join the fight against multiple sclerosis.
Sponsor me to support people living with MS and fund research to find a cure.
Hi, I’m Kate :) I’m 36, I was born and raised in sunny Townsville, and I live and work here.
Like over 33,000 other Australians I have Multiple Sclerosis.
At 18 years of age, with a handful of seemingly random symptoms and after visiting doctor after doctor, this diagnosis was the last thing I was expecting. Sitting in a neurologist’s office looking at brain scans showing things you can barely understand or even pronounce is scary. And it’s even scarier when you're still at school or uni, you still need to pass exams, you still need to pass your driving test, you still need to move out, you still need to find a job once you graduate... and the list goes on. This experience drives me in my mission to promote awareness and support for other young people diagnosed with MS - and I do get to hang out with some super cool young MS'ers in Townsville through our very awesome coffee and catchup group.
So what is MS? many people ask. Isn’t it that thing where you’re in a wheelchair?
This page from MS Queensland (https://msqld.org.au/site/about-ms/what-is-ms#sowhatisms) can explain it in detail a whole lot more eloquently than I can; but suffice to say that it’s an unpredictable autoimmune condition which is awfully good at throwing a spanner in the works. The immune system gets really overexcited really easily and attacks the central nervous system, causing all kinds of shenanigans like numbness, balance problems, dizziness, vision issues, chronic fatigue, bladder and bowel issues, and muscle weakness. These symptoms might last for days, weeks, months or never go away at all.
Most people diagnosed are between the age of 20 and 40, with a 3:1 ratio of women to men – and there’s still no known cause of the disease.
While medications and management have improved dramatically over the years, and MS no longer means a mandatory sentence in a wheelchair, it’s still a degenerative disease at its core and makes life for many a constant battle with changing goalposts.
There’s also no known cure.
33,000 Aussies (and I) would like to see that change.
I am swimming, splashing and flailing about in the 2024 Townsville MS Super Splash to raise funds that will ensure MS Queensland can keep providing fantastic support to help MS patients (like me) to live positively in their communities. The organisation does incredible work for people across QLD who have received this difficult diagnosis, providing information and counselling, helping navigate the NDIS, assisting research efforts and advocating for awareness and resources. They provide vital services and support to assist all of us affected by MS to live amazing lives.
Please DONATE and make your impact on the lives of Queenslanders living with MS.
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