Some say lightning doesn’t strike the same place twice…that instead maybe it hits in close proximity of the place previously struck. Whatever it may be – December 4, 2014 – The lightning, aka the MeSs known as MS hit our home, not once, but twice.
Rewind to Alaska 2009. Our then, 13 year old daughter was having health issues come up. She became very sick, headaches, nausea, fatigue, loss of appetite, weight loss, lethargic…really unexplainable, heart-wrenching and just not good. As parents, we were so afraid of what was wrong with our daughter. Labs were run and found her Vitamin D levels almost non-existent. MRI was run on her brain to determine what was causing headaches. Several lesions were found in her brain at the time.
As many do, I searched the internet for some clue of what could be going on. All searches led to Multiple Sclerosis. BUT, when discussed with the Alaska neurologist he said, no that she was “too young” to have MS. The MRI report even noted – based on her age, MS was unlikely. A couple of years later, we visited a neurologist here in Texas to see if we could get our daughter some relief from persistent migraines. Explained the past situations. New MRI – no changes. That neurologist basically told us, “Don’t go chasing after it,” meaning don’t have more MRI’s to find an explanation. So, we didn’t.
Earlier this year, our son, age 16 was diagnosed with MS. His MRI showed multiple lesions on his brain as well. I told the then neurologist that years ago, MRI’s on his sister showed brain lesions but doctors never figured out a reason. He said, “Hmmm.” And that was all that was said about that.
Fast forward November 2014: Since our son’s diagnosis, my husband and I had this nagging feeling that we really needed to have our daughter looked at with a new set of eyes. So, we contacted our son’s new neurologist (an MS specialist) and asked the question: Would you be willing…..?? He was. He reviewed old MRI’s and prior report, ordered a new one. Had the MRI the morning of 12/4 and met with us that afternoon. One new AND active lesion was found. Yes. This is MS.
When the doctor spoke to us to confirm MS, I asked my daughter how she was doing with the new information. She shrugged her shoulders. “I’m used to being sick so this is just another doctor visit.” Sadly through the years, she has had more sick days than healthy days. I wonder if we had a diagnosis and treatment started back then, if she would have a more productive and enjoyable life.I can only hope that now we can make a better difference in her health. If I knew then what I know now, maybe…just maybe, it would have made a difference.
Still, there are many questions that overwhelm our minds. How is it that both of our children have MS? How is it that to our knowledge, there is no family history of MS? How? Why? Lots of What If’s…Some things we will never know.
I do know we have a God who loves us, will never leave us or forsake us and promises that He will sustain us. Some days – most days are very difficult. But, we keep pressing forward somehow.
I think often of a verse from a song by Aaron Shust, “My Savior, My God.” The lyrics start out:
“I am not skilled to understand what God has willed, what God has planned. I only know at His right hand stands One who is my Savior.”
This is definitely something we will never understand.