My name is Ally, I am 38 years old and I am a single parent to two children, aged 11 & 18. I have MS and degenerative disc disease, which has changed my life.
Since the age of 16, I have worked full time and never been without a job. Around 16 years ago, I had a severe headache and lost the sight in both of my eyes. I spent months in hospital and was eventually treated with intravenous steroids. After the first course, my eyesight started to improve, so they gave me a second lot. After 6 months, my sight returned and I carried on as normal. 12 months later, it happened again but not so severe. This time, the steroids made my liver and kidneys start to fail and I spent Christmas in bed.
Fast forward to 2012, when I started to feel unwell, then was rushed into hospital after collapsing. For three months, I couldn’t move my legs. I had physio and used a wheelchair. I then had numerous hospital visits and emergency admissions. My symptoms at times included loss of movement, loss of speech, loss of vision, incontinence and inability to swallow. My neurologist suggested it may be a psychological issue rather than physical. I was devastated. Then 12 months ago I was diagnosed with MS.
I no longer work full time, my fatigue dictates that. I get told all the time I look tired and I need a rest… If only it were that simple. I feel unreliable as a friend and let people down often after making arrangements. I struggle with my confidence when in symptomatic and hide away. I feel inadequate as a parent, as my kids look after me often. But… Im a fighter!