My MS Journey Over the Past 10 Years


When I think back on my life pre-MS, pre-autoimmunity, I was sick or hurt a decent amount of the time. Not like 24/7 or anything like that, but something always hurt, or I was sick. This increased as I got older, and especially through high school. I used to joke that my body was revolting and that it was attacking itself.

Damn. How spot on I was.

Little did I know that I was foreshadowing something epic. My little joke would become not so funny in the not so distant future. And that future? Would be changed forever.

Diagnosis

Thankfully, I was diagnosed rather quickly. I started experiencing weird symptoms at the beginning of the summer of 2009 and by the end of August, I had a diagnosis of Clinically Isolated Syndrome (CIS). The first stage of an MS diagnosis; when you’ve only had 1 episode of symptoms, and your doc isn’t quite sure yet of how you’ll progress. So you get thrown into no-mans-land. A waiting game of will I or won’t I. Will this be the appointment where it all comes crashing down? Or will I squeak by until next time.

I didn’t make it that far into no-mans-land.

I got the “official” MS diagnosis soon after. To make things easier, I just count the original CIS diagnosis date as my MS diagnosis date. It was already happening, already set in motion, why confuse things even further.

I had my medication chosen. Reluctantly I began to learn how to inject myself daily. This was the new normal, I guess.

I’m Fine

Over the next few years, I went along with life as “normal”. Or as normally as any young 20-something could, while shooting myself in various parts of my body daily. Dealing with the lumps, divots, aches and pains that it brought. Whenever anyone asked how I was doing, I gave the standard answer: I’m Fine. With and emphasis on fine. Almost like an annoyed teenager talking to their parents.

I was angry. I wasn’t letting the gravity of the situation sink in. I didn’t want to. I hated anything orange and any mention of chronic disease or autoimmunity. I felt like it was a direct attack on me. I didn’t want help (do I ever?) and I didn’t want this disease.

Thankfully, I was still able to do all of the activities I was previously doing. Including running. I enjoyed running races and ran several half marathons. This led to a few run ins with blisters, which led to a few infections. You can’t really be on immunosuppressant medications while fighting infections I suppose. Gladly, I took a break from my MS meds while clearing the pesky infections.

The rub? I never really went back.

Relapse(s)

I was rather inconsistent with Copaxone after that. I had stock piles in my fridge, only injecting on the rare occasion. It wasn’t until I met my then boyfriend, now husband that I went back to a more consistent schedule. However, as before, the damage and inflammation were already set in motion.

My neurologist doesn’t blame MS for my first relapse, he blames me. Which, to be honest, is totally fair. I stopped taking my medication cold turkey with no other interventions in place. What was I really expecting? To be magically cured by stubbornness alone?

This set off an almost 2 year period of relapses, symptoms and uncertainty. I went from being symptom free, being able to live life relatively normally to not feeling an entire side of my body overnight. Yikes. Talk about scary and life being flipped upside down.

It took me a long time to get back to where I was. And even then, I’m not sure if I was ever 100% “back”. Heat now affected me, I got fatigued easier, I felt numb/tingly/burny at random times. I started to feel like I actually had MS.

Enough

I’m not sure how exactly, but at some point after all of these relapses, I found a few articles about the Autoimmune Protocol. I remember reading about it for the first time and having mixed feelings:

  1. Being excited that maybe I could do something other than medication to help myself and
  2. I have to eat WHAT?

The struggle was real.

I shared my newfound wisdom with a few people, who immediately called me crazy. Part of me agreed with them, TBH. But after enough time, I said enough.

I have to feel better, and medication alone ain’t cutting it.

I embarked on my AIP journey in January of 2016. Fueled with the frustrations of incredible pain, overwhelming fatigue and uncomfortable sensory symptoms.

It was not easy. But nothing that is worth it ever is.

I struggled without my chocolate and coffee, like whoa. I found out that nightshades (includes tomatoes), that I practically lived on as a kid, were one of my biggest offenders. And I realized, that yes, I can learn to like veggies. So sorry mom, for all the pain I put you through.

Eventually the pain subsided, the fatigue lifted and the sensory symptoms calmed. Was I “back to my normal, pre-relapse self?” Not really. But was I better? Hell yea.

I slowly crawled out of my relapse hole. I started being more active. Bringing back more foods as my symptoms calmed. I started living life again.

Was it scary? Absolutely. I felt like at any moment I could wake up and not feel a part of my body, or move a part of my body. But that’s how this goes. At any point, anything could happen. To any of us, really. But I try not to live there. In the “unknown”. Because that’s all it is, unknown. If I know that I’m doing as much as I can for myself, then that’s all I need. The rest will shake itself out.

The Present

How am I doing now? I’m doing pretty damn good for someone who has had MS for 10 years, if I do say so myself. I’m proud of everything I have done, everything I have accomplished. All the work I have put in to improve my health.

My MS has changed over the years, for sure. It’s gone from almost silent, to frickin LOUD, back down to a dull murmur. A question I get frequently is: Am I totally 100% symptom free? As improved as I am, I’d have to answer that with a big Nope.

I still have trouble with the heat, I feel weird sensory symptoms now and again and my bladder? Oy vey. That’s a story for another day. But, I’m able to mostly get through a day without being derailed by MS. And that’s a big Win, in my book.

Sometimes my brain gets the better of me when I think about the future and what it holds. But I remind myself all I can do, is what I’m doing. The rest is up to God.

If you’re into healing lifestyles like I am, I’d love for you to join my new FB group, The LissMS Healing Lounge. We talk about all things healing lifestyle, from nutrition, to sleep, to stress, even pet friendly indoor plants. I’d love it if you came over and joined the discussion. Join here.

I’M ALISSA!

I help women who have also been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis make specific and personalized diet, lifestyle & subconscious changes so that they can begin to heal their body, reduce disease symptoms, and return to a life they love.hey there,

follow along on Instagram:

In case you needed to hear that today.

You’re not a failure.
You didn’t “fail” at healing.
Having MS is hard- do what’s best for you.

In case you needed to hear that today.

You’re not a failure.
You didn’t “fail” at healing.
Having MS is hard- do what’s best for you.
...

58 9
This is my challenge to you over the next week.

Take some time and think about this past year.

All you’re proud of, all you’ve accomplished. And if you have some things that don’t bring you joy, be proud of yourself for making it through in one piece and still being here.

Reflection is a great way to cultivate motivation to keep going..

You’re doing amazing.
You’ve done amazing.
Let’s keep going.
🧡❤️🧡

This is my challenge to you over the next week.

Take some time and think about this past year.

All you’re proud of, all you’ve accomplished. And if you have some things that don’t bring you joy, be proud of yourself for making it through in one piece and still being here.

Reflection is a great way to cultivate motivation to keep going..

You’re doing amazing.
You’ve done amazing.
Let’s keep going.
🧡❤️🧡
...

21 4
Comparison is the thief of joy.

Regardless of what you see others doing,
you’re right where you should be.

❤️🧡❤️

Comparison is the thief of joy.

Regardless of what you see others doing,
you’re right where you should be.

❤️🧡❤️
...

24 10
This took me completely by surprise, cause I usually roast myself after a simple mistake 🙈

But, I just didn’t? 🤷🏻‍♀️

Working on self improvement is weird.
Like I’m not even consciously working on how I talk to myself at the moment. 

Have I in the past? Sure. And it’s something I try to stay conscious of, but def have my moments where I fall into old patterns.

But this moment gave me hope.

What moments in your journey have given you hope lately?

This took me completely by surprise, cause I usually roast myself after a simple mistake 🙈

But, I just didn’t? 🤷🏻‍♀️

Working on self improvement is weird.
Like I’m not even consciously working on how I talk to myself at the moment.

Have I in the past? Sure. And it’s something I try to stay conscious of, but def have my moments where I fall into old patterns.

But this moment gave me hope.

What moments in your journey have given you hope lately?
...

55 2
Thank you for supporting my business this past year. 

Because in reality, you’re supporting me.

So thank you.
Scott thanks you too!

Thank you for supporting my business this past year.

Because in reality, you’re supporting me.

So thank you.
Scott thanks you too!
...

38 7
👉🏼Feeling stuck with your MS symptoms?
👉🏼Feeling like your body betrayed you and is working against you?
👉🏼Are you worried you’re stuck like this and will never get better?

I get it. At one point I did too.

Years ago I was experiencing “Aggressive MS” and I thought I’d never function the same.

I thought my days of moving how I wanted, or doing anything on a whim were over.

I couldn’t walk well, couldn’t feel my body correctly and I was SCARED.

But now?
I’m confident in the ways I’m helping myself.
I no longer have aggressive MS.
I can move how I want, when I want.

Because of the changes I’ve made over the years.

No, it’s not easy, but that’s where I come in!!

I’ve dedicated my life to helping those with MS realize that feeling better is possible and helping them get there.

My 2 courses and my membership are on sale this weekend for Black Friday,

want to start your own success story??

Comment SUCCESS below and I’ll send you the link!!

👉🏼Feeling stuck with your MS symptoms?
👉🏼Feeling like your body betrayed you and is working against you?
👉🏼Are you worried you’re stuck like this and will never get better?

I get it. At one point I did too.

Years ago I was experiencing “Aggressive MS” and I thought I’d never function the same.

I thought my days of moving how I wanted, or doing anything on a whim were over.

I couldn’t walk well, couldn’t feel my body correctly and I was SCARED.

But now?
I’m confident in the ways I’m helping myself.
I no longer have aggressive MS.
I can move how I want, when I want.

Because of the changes I’ve made over the years.

No, it’s not easy, but that’s where I come in!!

I’ve dedicated my life to helping those with MS realize that feeling better is possible and helping them get there.

My 2 courses and my membership are on sale this weekend for Black Friday,

want to start your own success story??

Comment SUCCESS below and I’ll send you the link!!
...

16 0
Grab your path to healing!!

These are the lowest prices for my courses like ever, and they won’t be back. (And they’ll prob be going up in the new year- planning some updates!!)

Comment HEALING below and I’ll send you a link, or check out my stories!!

Grab your path to healing!!

These are the lowest prices for my courses like ever, and they won’t be back. (And they’ll prob be going up in the new year- planning some updates!!)

Comment HEALING below and I’ll send you a link, or check out my stories!!
...

3 2
The first step to being successful with managing stress (& being successful with anything really) is:

Awareness of where you currently are.

You can’t change or manage what you’re not aware of.

You can only know yourself as deep as you’re awareness of yourself goes.

Try this:
Right now as you read this, pause for a sec.
Take a deep breath, and ask yourself:

Where were my thoughts?
Where is my breathing?
What am I saying to myself?

Get really honest here too (warning- it might be uncomfy)

What did you discover while checking in? Let me know in the comments!

-
-
If we haven’t met yet, Hi! 👋🏼👋🏼 I’m Alissa. I’m a Holistic Practitioner & Therapist specializing in MS. 
I use all the tools I’ve comprised over my 10+ year career (and 14+ years with MS) to help my clients with MS decrease their symptoms, improve their overall health and get back to living life on their terms, not MS’ terms.
Interested to hear how that might look for you? Comment 🧡 below or DM me and we’ll chat!

The first step to being successful with managing stress (& being successful with anything really) is:

Awareness of where you currently are.

You can’t change or manage what you’re not aware of.

You can only know yourself as deep as you’re awareness of yourself goes.

Try this:
Right now as you read this, pause for a sec.
Take a deep breath, and ask yourself:

Where were my thoughts?
Where is my breathing?
What am I saying to myself?

Get really honest here too (warning- it might be uncomfy)

What did you discover while checking in? Let me know in the comments!

-
-
If we haven’t met yet, Hi! 👋🏼👋🏼 I’m Alissa. I’m a Holistic Practitioner & Therapist specializing in MS.
I use all the tools I’ve comprised over my 10+ year career (and 14+ years with MS) to help my clients with MS decrease their symptoms, improve their overall health and get back to living life on their terms, not MS’ terms.
Interested to hear how that might look for you? Comment 🧡 below or DM me and we’ll chat!
...

14 1
Progress is absolutely not linear.

But, it’s still progress nonetheless.

I see you if you’re in a “dip” or feel like you’re going “backwards”

You’re really not, you’re right where you should be.

Keep going!!
🧡❤️🧡

Progress is absolutely not linear.

But, it’s still progress nonetheless.

I see you if you’re in a “dip” or feel like you’re going “backwards”

You’re really not, you’re right where you should be.

Keep going!!
🧡❤️🧡
...

22 1
Lol, all this got me was an MS diagnosis. 

This was me basically my whole life up until a few years ago.

My clients have all talked about situations like this too.

It’s no wonder why a lot of us have an autoimmune disease now. 

Please, speak your truth. Your body will thank you.

If we haven’t met yet, Hi! 👋🏼👋🏼 I’m Alissa.
I’m a Holistic Practitioner & Therapist specializing in MS.

I use all the tools I’ve comprised over my 10+ year career (and 14+ years with MS) to help my clients with MS decrease their symptoms, improve their overall health and get back to living life on their terms, not MS’ terms.

Interested to hear how that might look for you? Comment 🧡 below or DM me and we’ll chat!

Lol, all this got me was an MS diagnosis.

This was me basically my whole life up until a few years ago.

My clients have all talked about situations like this too.

It’s no wonder why a lot of us have an autoimmune disease now.

Please, speak your truth. Your body will thank you.

If we haven’t met yet, Hi! 👋🏼👋🏼 I’m Alissa.
I’m a Holistic Practitioner & Therapist specializing in MS.

I use all the tools I’ve comprised over my 10+ year career (and 14+ years with MS) to help my clients with MS decrease their symptoms, improve their overall health and get back to living life on their terms, not MS’ terms.

Interested to hear how that might look for you? Comment 🧡 below or DM me and we’ll chat!
...

90 4
This has been a TOUGH week friends.

Don’t lose yourself.

What else would you add to this list?
What helps you when life is super hard?

❤️❤️

This has been a TOUGH week friends.

Don’t lose yourself.

What else would you add to this list?
What helps you when life is super hard?

❤️❤️
...

20 2
I’ve been actively working on my nervous system for the past year or two.

That hasn’t meant that all my anxiety or depression magically vanished.

It just means that when I do find myself feeling like an anxious mess or a depressed puddle, I know how to attend to and care for myself.

Not in the goal of “fixing” per se, more honoring and accepting.

This is one of the ways I help my clients improve their MS symptoms, but attending to their nervous systems and improving their stress response and resilience.

I have so many ways to work with me.. from 1:1 support to my free community.. comment below “interested” and we’ll chat about what would be right for you!

I’ve been actively working on my nervous system for the past year or two.

That hasn’t meant that all my anxiety or depression magically vanished.

It just means that when I do find myself feeling like an anxious mess or a depressed puddle, I know how to attend to and care for myself.

Not in the goal of “fixing” per se, more honoring and accepting.

This is one of the ways I help my clients improve their MS symptoms, but attending to their nervous systems and improving their stress response and resilience.

I have so many ways to work with me.. from 1:1 support to my free community.. comment below “interested” and we’ll chat about what would be right for you!
...

18 2

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