I don’t have a lot pressing on me today so I thought it was about time for me to write my intrudution.
I will start with the personal. Yes, my name is Jim. I was born in Daytona Beach, Florida on December 5, 1967. As of the time of this writing I am 53 years old getting ready to hit 54. So yes, I am getting up there. I have two step children, Kevin and Lindsay. And my wonderful wife Gina.
I have two furbabies. Dougie, who is 8 years old and a Coon Hound/Beagle mix. And yes, just like both sides of his family, he is very vocal. It is funny. Sometimes we will be playing with him and he will start barking then the beagle will come out of him and it turns into a howl. Our other is a cat named Smokey. We named him that because of his grey coat. We are not sure what breed he is but he has long hair. The downside to that is he gets fur balls from time to time. We think he is about 7 years old but we are not sure because we found him one cold, rainy night when we were walking Dougie and our other furbaby, who has since crossed the Rainbow Bridge, named Mazi.
Now on to my Multiple Sclerosis…
I was diagnosed in July of 2005. I had just started a job at a prison in Virginia, Augusta Correctional Center, as an officer. The state had a policy of hiring on the 10th and 25th of the month. So my official date of hire was December 25, 2004. I remained on that job until the summer of 2011. Our normal shift was 12 hours. But once in a while we would get held over to work the shift coming on because they were short of officers so that would add another four hours. 16 hours in a prison is tough. Most, if not all, of that time you would be on your feet. I simply got to the point where I could not take that long on my feet. And with other problems I was having with my MS I had to go out on disability.
I have always had the idea to start a website for MS patients, caregivers, those in limbo, and anyone interested in MS. So that is how this came about.
But I was diagnosed with Relapsing-Remitting Multiple Sclerosis, AKA RRMS. The first medication I was on was Avonex and I hated it. I had such a hard time giving myself that intramuscular injection. After a couple of years, I went on Copaxone. That was better for me since it was just a subcutaneous injection.
After a while, like with many medications, it did not seem to be working as well. In other words it was losing its efficacy. So that is when it was decided that I would go on Tecfidera.
Do not let the scary stories about Tec push you away from it. I have had very mild side effects, and that was only for the first couple of weeks. I know I am lucky there. But I had worse side effects from Copaxone when I first started on it.
But back to the website. My idea for this site is for it to be a place where everyone can get together and exchange ideas and information about Multiple Sclerosis. We have discussion forums and an activity wall for our members to be able to communicate with each other.
I also am looking forward to the support aspect of this. As it says in the description we will all be here if you need information, or to blow off steam, or a shoulder to cry on.
So sit back, grab a cup of coffee or tea and relax knowing that you are among people who understand whatever you are going through.
In short, Welcome to Jim&MS. We will do whatever we can to make your stay more pleasant.
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