I have MS. MS doesn’t have ME!

My name is Andrea Dunn; I’m a radio and podcast host from Southern Ontario, and I was diagnosed with MS when I was 31-years-old.

In 2008, I began to experience numbness and tingling in my legs. I also experienced a static feeling down my spine when I would bend my neck forward.

My family doctor referred me to a Neurologist for a series of tests. I underwent an MRI scan in 2009. The results came back inconclusive. I would have a follow-up scan scheduled the next year.

In June of 2010, MRI results would show I had multiple sclerosis.

I was sad, but mostly shocked at my diagnosis.

I wasn’t prepared to handle the news. My Neurologist asked me to return to his office in a few weeks with any questions. I had many! Mainly, what do I do now?

Once I was able to clear my thoughts and think about my future, the next decision would be to choose an MS drug.

I opted for the MS treatment Copaxone. This drug is self-injected every day under the skin.

A nurse would visit my home and teach me how to inject myself properly with a needle.

It was scary, at first, and very intimidating. However, I had to learn how to do it.

Now, I have been self-administering this medication every day for the past 10 years!

My MS journey has been relatively good. My initial symptoms of tingling and numbness went away and I am currently in remission.

My main struggle with the disease has been anxiety. I think a lot about whether my disease will progress into a disability.

I also have to deal with a lot of fatigue. I’m often tired and have to rest more than 8 hours a day to function properly.

I believe I continue to live my best life with MS. I’m mindful to get a lot of rest, eat properly and exercise on a regular basis.

My partner and I formed Team Dunner to support my MS journey. Together, we raise money every year for the MS Walk.

This year, to mark my 10-year anniversary with the disease, I set a goal to raise $10,000. My total was $16,270! I am very proud of this achievement and look forward to continuing my support to end MS.

This year too, with the help of podcast network Curiouscast and the MS Society of Canada, I launched a podcast called This Is MS. Its goal is to share inspiring stories of Canadians who fight MS every single day and never let it define them

Thank you for letting me share my story!

Andrea Dunn is a radio and podcast host based in London, Ontario. You can catch Andrea weekdays on London’s FM96, or listen to her radio show or podcast online at fm96.com and curiouscast.ca respectively.