– Elbert Hubbard
Six years pass, I stayed on the Avonex therapy plan and I had episodes every four to six months. These episodes varied in duration and severity and were unpredictable. I kept a log of my episodes and the only link I could establish was with stress. If I had a particularly stressful week at work, it seemed to aggravate my symptoms; however, that was not always the case. I tried to correlate my exacerbations with how much water I drank, food I ate, rest, and exercise but nothing seemed to point to the cause of the exacerbation. My body seemed to be following the path as predicted by Dr. Heyman. When I would have an episode, I would call him and he would tell me the same thing, “If you want, we can put you on steroids.” He did advise me NOT to take steroids unless absolutely necessary. In other words, suck it up unless the symptoms are unbearable.
Through job changes, we came back to Dallas where I went to work for my dad. Actually he is my step-father and I call him Sam. He raised me from the time I was eight years old. Even though his real name is George Samuel, I always called him Sam, for some reason that name just stuck. If you are part of the inside circle with our family, you would call him Sam. If you are an outsider, it’s George. I know it may be confusing, but it seems to work for us.
Sam was born in South India in a place called Kerala. His birth place becomes important later in the story.
March of 2007: I have my most severe episode of MS to date. My body refuses to cooperate. My body is numb from the waist down. My feet won’t move up and down stairs, try as I may. I am struggling to walk. Each step is an adventure. I realize that walking is a mental exercise. Your legs and your body are participating in a synchronized dance. Your movements have to be somewhat precise so you don’t fall down. Think about it, you lean forward with your body and before you fall down, your leg jumps ahead to catch you. I didn’t appreciate this activity until my legs didn’t play along with this dance. I felt like I was going to fall down whenever I moved. Actually this was pretty scary because I just couldn’t control my body! The only good news was I didn’t need a wheel chair. I could move around by myself and I could even drive. Speed and coordination were my main issues. Both my legs felt like they were wearing lead boots. The heavy feeling was not going away so I went to see my neurologist. Help!
Even though I didn’t want steroids, I agreed to get started with intravenous steroid treatment. Unfortunately, it was no help. The doctor explained that it is normal for MS patients to have increased episodes after nine or ten years with MS. In other words, my MS is taking its course as predicted.
Sam said, “Go see a doctor in India.” “What?” I exclaimed. “Are you crazy? What kind of stuff can a doctor in India do that a top neurologist in the United States of America can’t do?” Third world country, backwards medicine, no facilities, voodoo doctors. “Whatever!” I thought to myself, I’ll go …
Long story cut short … the voodoo doctors did their magic, and I was cured!
I mean, baby, I was back!
You can see more of this with videos a company did for me (Three parts)