Want to know a secret? When my book is published it will no longer be a secret SO HERE GOES: Nancy’s disease #2. After suffering for years with the mania, the depression, the anxiety, the obsession…..I had finally become mentally stable….yes, even working a full time job, living on my own and “leaning on the promises” when disaster struck. Are you kidding me? Multiple Sclerosis? Yes. Now that I had my mind back, a new disease, not to take my mind – although I was warned of cognitive changes – but paralysis!!! I couldn’t bear the thought of it! There I was, at the Cleveland Clinic Mellon Center, giving my MRI x-rays to the Dr. after being told that I either had a brain tumor or MS….wearing an eye patch over one eye, because I was seeing double. The Dr. gave me the diagnosis stating that there were lesions on my brain stem. It was November of 1998 Thanksgiving Day. Everyone was hugging me, knowing that just the day before my life came to a abrupt halt. How was I to deal with this horrific diagnosis? Panic set in. I did not just have fear but I was paralyzed with it! (hummmmm) I was, again, unable to function….the fear of my body slowly going numb, or pain, or limping along with “drop foot” or -or -or dare I think about it? UNABLE TO GET OUT OF BED AT ALL? WHEELCHAIR BOUND?
I found my answer at North-Mar church. I went up to the altar and, as in the book of James, the Elders of the church anointed me with oil and fervently prayed for my healing. I felt a burning hot sensation on the back of my neck. I felt my eyesight, which had gone from double vision to tunnel vision correct itself. It was yet another supernatural touch from God! All symptoms were gone, in Jesus’s name!
I had forgotten all about the MS in 2001 and unknowingly was poisoning myself by lying in a tanning bed so I wasn’t as white as my wedding dress! My left hand and arm were tingling and, actually, my left hand began to hurt in a weird sort of way. I was foolishly soaking myself in heat. Did I forget? Or had I not yet known that heat is the worst for MS. Oh dear! I had done it to myself….my FREE WILL brought back a glimpse of the disease.
I went back to a neurologist. This time at the St. Elizabeth’s MS clinic. I brought the doctor my MRI. This doctor ordered another MRI of the brain stem to see if the illness had progressed. When the results came back, the doctor was dumbfounded!!! There were NO lesions on my brain stem, NO NOT A ONE!!! I was SO happy! But no, the doctor wasn’t satisfied. He ordered yet another MRI. This one was of my spinal cord. He called Gary (soon to be Garrett) and I into the x-ray room. He pointed at this almost miniscule dot on my spinal cord and said “There it is! There is a lesion!!!” Ok, alright. Here comes the FEAR……but I had already written down each and every scripture that said “STAND FIRM” and I believed I would and always will “STAND FIRM!” The doctor gave me two books. One was written by Squiggy from the TV show LAVERN & SHIRLEY. It was called “Falling Down Laughing”. I read the book, as Squiggy jokes his way through his diagnosis of MS. (I did not find it the least bit comical.) The other book was a medical book that started out talking about the amount of people who COMMIT SUICIDE because they know they have MS! I threw that book across the room and never went back to a neurologist again.
Today…..after 15 years…..my only MS symptom is numbness in my left hand and, occasionally I am bothered by heat. Here is my song FOR TODAY….”Because HE lives, I can face tomorrow, Because HE lives all fear is gone! Because I know HE holds the future and LIFE IS WORTH THE LIVING, JUST BECAUSE HE LIVES.”