Since I was diagnosed I have tried to link up with many MS charities and organisations simply to raise awareness and get involved with the ‘MS Movement’.
Early on in my diagnosis I turned to Shift.MS, an organisation set up FOR people with MS BY someone with MS. I suppose it’s a bit like Facebook for people with MS and you can meet and connect with other MSers, all over the world. It’s great for targeting the younger generation as there is a stigma that MS only affects much older people.
The most common age of diagnosis is between 20 – 40; Hardly old!
I did some work with them on a couple of videos 9 months after I was diagnosed which were really interesting. It’s weird (and rather cringeworthy) looking back at myself then as I can see how conflicted I was; I came across as strong but I know that the person I’m watching now was fragile and scared inside and had a long road of ups and downs to come.
The people I was filming with had all had MS much longer than I had and there was a point where I started crying and had to stop filming when they were talking about wheelchairs.
“I was 22 years old and contemplating the possibility of soon being in a wheelchair.”
Shift Ms produced a series of short films ‘GALLOP’; exploring the life changing events of diagnosis and then ‘BELONG’ which looks at people in conversation discussing their different perspectives of living with MS. They then asked 6 real ‘MSers’ to share their experiences of diagnosis and discuss some of the issues raised in Gallop and Belong.
A lot of the people who know me now have never seen these before so I thought I’d share them now:
GALLOP BY MSers – MSers discussing their diagnosis
BELONG by MSers – MSers talking about coming to terms with their MS.