Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas Everybody

Last year Nick and I went to Peace River for Christmas.  Over our visit we talked with mom about going for the CCSVI treatment but at that point we didn't think it was possible.  What a difference a year has made!  Not only was it possible to go get the CCSVI treatment but we went and it worked!  What a perfect Christmas present.

We would like to thank everybody for all their love, support and prayers this year.  I don't think you will ever understand how much it has meant to us.  We hope each and everyone of you has a happy, healthy, and safe Christmas and that maybe Santa will bring CCSVI treatments to Canada in 2011!

God bless you all.

Maggie and Teresa

Christmas Ornaments (candle holder and star) from Sofia, Bulgaria that we got during our trip.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Falling Down

One of the best things about growing-up in Peace River was the ski hill in town.  In the late 80s my parents decided to take advantage of this and bought us all skis, boots, poles and seasons passes for the ski hill.  I remember the first think you need to learn when you go skiing is how to get up from a fall.  Let's be honest... everybody falls down so it is very important that you can get back up to try again.  Once you master getting up you can go onto bigger and better things like learning to stop, snowplow, turn, go faster, do moguls, maybe even learn to do jumps.  At each of these stages though you will fall down and you will need to get back up.

So you are probably wondering where I am going with this.  With mom's MS one of her symptoms is she falls down.  Again we all fall down sometimes but mom just does it more often then the rest of us.  The problem however wasn't so much that she fell down more often, it was that she couldn't get herself back up easily.  At times it could take her over an hour to get up from a fall.  This was always frustrating for her as well as for everybody who would find out about it and couldn't help.

Well guess what she did this week?  She took a little fall and then got herself right back up, only using a chair as a support!  Huge!  Like with skiing, if you can get up from a fall you can learn/re-learn everything else!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Getting Ready For Christmas

I'm sure everybody was up to the same thing this weekend... getting ready for Christmas.  Nick and I are coming to the end of the Christmas preparations and getting ready to just relax.  The tree is up.  The presents to Alberta mailed.  The rest of the presents are pretty well bought.  And most importantly Nick writes his last exam of this term tomorrow!  I had a bit of a delay in our Christmas prep yesterday with a migraine headache,  hence the delay in the weekly blog post.

Mom too has been getting ready for Christmas, which she said has been a huge amount easier this year than last.  The energy is still going strong.  Now she is starting to notice more strength improving.  She was putting her Christmas decorations up and was able to climb up and down the step stool four times!  She decided not to push the fifth time and instead made Duncan do the last thing. 

To mom, one of the most important parts of Christmas is of course going to church.  This week she went to church with Duncan and did something she hasn't done in a long time - stood up when everybody else stood.  Who knows, maybe soon she'll be able to walk up to get communion.  What an amazing New Years gift that would be.

Hope everybody's Christmas preparations are going as good as mom's are.  Less than two weeks left until the big day!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Three Weeks Post Liberation - Magic No, Miracle... maybe?

I was talking to Mom again tonight and thought I would fill everybody in with a bit of an update on how things are going.

When we went to Bulgaria we were all hoping for a magic cure.  We knew that wasn't likely but one can hope.  Mom was saying tonight that it is a little frustrating to not get the magic.  Every improvement is good but one can't help but feel a little frustrated and as though everybody is watching to see a miracle, the changes however are small and much harder to see.

I'm sure most of you, like me, have spent much of this week doing Christmas shopping and errands.  This is something we take for vantage - going in and out of stores, fighting line-ups, and maybe getting a hot chocolate as a reward for surviving.  Last year this was something mom didn't get to do much of  because going to just one store would tire her out.  This year however, post Liberation Treatment, this is the case!  This week she said she went downtown and went in and out of several stores, having to get the scooter in and out of the van by herself several times, and then came home.  Guess what?  She still had lots of energy!

Another thing that we take for vantage that mom just regained recently was the energy to stand up while doing her hair.  Before the procedure she would have to bring her walker over to sit on while straightening her hair, this week she did it while standing the whole time.

Of course Mom says she realizes that you can't just hope and pray for the best, you gotta work at it.  Although she is still on the waiting list to get into physio, with the help of Rory (a personal trainer) she has a daily work-out regime.  She is using the small weights that he bought her and doing half an hour of exercises every morning, several exercises throughout the day, and then an other fifteen minutes at the end of the day.  Each day she says she realizes she can do something better or do things that she hadn't be able to do just a few days ago.

So no it isn't the magic but I still think it is a miracle all the improvements that are coming.  For the first time in YEARS things are getting better... something we never thought was possible.  I keep thinking its like somebody turned a light of hope on that we never knew was possible.  If that isn't a miracle then I don't know what is.

Next week... One Month since treatment update!