Friday, October 30, 2009

Why I Wore Lipstick...

...To My MS Diagnosis.

It's official. Sarah Ellis - Mom, Military Wife, Business Owner, and MS'er.

No surprise here however the fam didn't take it as well. I had already commited to the fact that I had MS, as was clearly shown in one of my past posts. The Hubs has been wonderful and even wrote a little something that I would like to share with you.

"It's been a long process, but today we got confirmation that Sarah has Multiple Sclerosis. So I'm writing this for her, for me, for them and for you. But most importantly for Us. Because, in the end, it is the 'Us' and the 'We' who makes this journey through the ups and downs of life easier on 'you' and 'I'. Today marks a turning point in our lives but not a stopping point nor a resting point. In fact, it is Sarah's quiet strength, determination and courage (not to mention stubborness) in the face of a debilitating disease that has given me the ability to cope with the possibilities of the future. So, today We decide to persevere and not give in...We decided to rejoice in life and not focus on the suffering...We decide to laugh and smile more than we will cry...We decide to support each other when we are the weakest. But most importantly, We will continue to be Us."

So now you know why I love this man. :) I think he pretty much said it all.

I'm handling everything pretty well. I'm telling myself I'm fine but this headache that I've had for 3 days now is telling me I'm stressing. It'll go away soon, I know. No tears. Those were shed months ago, ok maybe weeks ago, when all of this was really hitting me.

Results of my Spinal MRI, EEG and VEP:

My Spinal MRI showed one more lesion. So three in my noggin and one on my spine. My EEG came back normal so my ex-neuro was wrong when she diagnosed seizures. My VEP results weren't back yet but he said the results wouldn't make a difference either way.

The diagnosis was delivered and now it's time to get down to business. As I told a fellow MS'er, "I think I'm waiting for the words to come out of the neuros mouth and then something inside of me will say "GO!" and I'll be on my way to healthy living." I'm sticking to that but first, I've got some reading to do...

These are 4 binders, each containing information about a different drug said to slow the progression of MS (I have RRMS by the way). When the Doc said he was going to give us "information packets" on each, I think Sean and I were just expecting a pamphlet. Nope! We both said, "Holy Shit!" (ok, maybe it was just me) when we saw the nurse walk up with these monsters.

At first I was not willing to consider a drug, but after conversing with my neuro and reading up on my options I think I'm going to go for it. I'm not looking forward to injecting myself everyday and yesterday I thought, "I am 27. 27! 27! TWENTY SEVEN! And now my refrigerater is constantly going to be stocked with a months worth of mommy's drugs. Ah well, what can ya do?

So the plan is set! Diet. Exercise. Drugs.

Oh My!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

2 More Days...

till diagnosis day.

The way I look at it, I'll either get the definite diagnosis, or he'll request a Lumbar Puncture.


I'm banking on the diagnosis. Especially since I've been paying more attention to my symptoms and one symptom has been around constantly for weeks. At the very least.

It's my understanding that in order to diagnosis MS the doctor needs to see...

- Symptoms and signs indicating disease of the brain or spinal cord - Check
- Evidence of two or more lesions upon examination by MRI scan - Check
- Objective evidence of disease of the brain or spinal cord on doctor's examination - Check
- Two or more episodes lasting at least 24 hours and occurring at least one month apart - Read Below
- No other explanation for the symptoms - We'll See

Ok, I cheated. I copied that from WebMD. But I already knew all that stuff.

I'll list all my symptoms at another time but there are now 2 episodes where my symptoms have lasted longer then 24 hours. The first one was in May, which started all this MS crap, when I went in to see my GP for vertigo. It ended up lasting about 30 hours and at that appointment my GP referred me to my now ex-crappy neuro. That's one.

Number two. It's still going on and I just started paying attention to it after my last appointment with my new, wonderful neuro. 24 hours a day, everyday, for at least the last 3 weeks, I have been experiencing ringing/humming in my ears.

The best way I can describe it is if you turn on your TV, mute the audio, and then stand by the TV and listen to the sound it makes just because it's on, that's what I'm hearing. 24-7. At first I only noticed it at night, when all was quiet in our home. After I noticed it for a few nights I started 'listening' for it during the day and sure enough, it was still there.

It's not very loud or very annoying unless I concentrate on it. And when I concentrate on it, it gives me a headache. So I've paid attention long enough to know it's happening all the time and now I'm just ignoring it. Or trying to.


1. I've painted my nails blue. Just because I can and in the spirit of Halloween. The hubs looked at me crazy but Bean and D loved it.

2. Operation "Courteous Driver" is underway, and I think my whole city knows it. Yesterday I was cutoff by a very kind driver (biting my tongue), and this morning some jerk off guy was inches away from rear ending me.

3. Working on smoozing my husband into buying me a treadmill. Operation "Get Fit & Healthy" will begin Monday. With or without the treadmill. I think I'm going to start off with my normal diet and then work in (or out) some of the things that are/aren't recommended for those with (maybe) MS. Until then, I'll be hitting all my favorite crap food places.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

A Conversation with Myself...

Recently, I read a post by a fellow blogger and one sentence she wrote really hit home for me and got me thinkin'.

"I am always living like I am dieing. Always been afraid of death."

There are many things I don't do, or try not to do, because I think, "I could die from this." Silly things like flying, which may not be that silly, but to me it is. And leaving the back door unlocked when it's 1 o'clock in the afternoon and no one in their right mind would try to go up against Kouma. But still I think, "the one time I fly, or the one time I leave that door unlocked, or the one time I'm not watching my back while putting my groceries in the car, something bad is going to happen."

I wouldn't say that I live in a constant state of fear, but it's pretty damn close. It's more a fear of something being done to me, then something accidentally happening.

When I was younger I had Alopecia Areata. A condition that causes round patches of hair loss. I wanna say I had it for about 4 years and the majority of those years were when I was in high school. It was terrible. Most people didn't even know I suffered from this, I had gotten really good at hiding it. I would go through cans and cans of hair spray, swooping my hair to whichever side was recently affected by a sudden bald spot.

I think I told 2 people, only because they kept bugging me to go swimming and didn't understand why I couldn't. Or didn't want to. I felt so sorry for myself during those high school years. I remember always wanting my hair to fall freely and blow in the wind, just like everyone elses. Instead, it was pasted down to my scalp with 20 minutes worth of hairspray.

After the Alopecia cleared up (it took getting pregnant to get rid of it completely), I thought to myself, "My troubles aren't over". And as it turns out, I may've been right.

Not too long ago, I told my husband that I have always thought something was going to go wrong. That I'd get breast cancer or a tumor or maybe something even worse, if there is anything. I wasn't sitting around waiting for it to happen, but I expected it to.

Just another way of living in fear.

With the impending diagnosis of MS (I know it's coming), it has forced me to really sit back and take a good look at my life. Who am I? Who do I want to be? What do I want to do? How am I going to handle this?

When I analyzed myself and who I am, I found that I wasn't everything I wanted to be. I also figured out that I spend way too much time trying to be what other people want me to be. I try too hard to please people without considering how it makes me feel. Plainly put, I ignore my feelings for the sake of making others happy.

I think now it's time for me to be a little selfish and get down to the nitty gritty of who I am, who I want to be, and how I'm going to make it happen. When I think about the stuff I want to change, some of it sounds a little superficial. Like, wanting to have tone legs so I can look H.O.T. in a skirt (which I haven't worn since high school) or a pair of shorts.

Another thing, I want to get healthy and fit. But it's no longer because I want to look good for my husband or others, it's because I want to live longer, live stronger, live happier, and live better. Another, I want to free myself of stress. Impossible huh! Probably, but I'm going to try anyway. I told Sean, "tomorrow, I'm starting my "courteous driver" thing." LOL! I think most of my stress comes when I'm on the road. I figure if I just lay back (not literally) and take it easy while on the road, nothing will bother me.

As I sit here and read over that last sentence, I can't help but laugh. People just piss me off when on the road and it'll really be a miracle if I can do the courteous driver thing. LOL! We'll see how it goes.

Here's the thing, I can either lay down and die, or I can stand up and fight. I think fighting fits my personality much better so we're gonna go with that one. :) As hard as life can be sometimes, you really do need to "roll with the punches" if you wanna survive.

This is my life, and I'm going to make it what I want it to be. And what I deserve, MS or not.

...because that's the reallest conversation I'll ever have.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Holy Heaven

Chocolate Covered Strawberry. Need I say more?

I picked up my FREE box of 6 chocolate covered fruits from Edible Arrangements.

They had a HUGE promotion going on where they were giving away $1.5 million worth of chocolate dipped fruit boxes. Heaven.

Isn't the box just delightful? I think I may like it a little too much but that's probably because I know what's inside.

Strawberries, Pineapples and Bananas...

Oh My!!!

2 Minutes Later....


Unfortunately, the FREEBIES have come to an end. But if you have a Facebook page, become a fan of Edible Arrangements and keep up with the news.

NOTE TO HUSBAND: I equally LOVE the Pineapple and Strawberries dipped in chocolate.

Your Favortie Girl,


Thursday, October 22, 2009

Spiders and Ghosts



I wasn't really in the mood for pumpkin carving this year. Mainly because it's a pain, but also because our pumpkins never last too long after being gutted. I wish I could take credit for this idea but I saw it in a recent issue of Better Homes and Gardens.

There's look much better than mine. I should've painted them instead of using markers but my lack of patience wouldn't allow it. I purchased everything (minus the pumpkins) from Michael's. I used pipe cleaner for the spider legs and super glued the eyes on for both. Then just a white and black marker and POOF! Ghosts and Spiders. :) Cost about $12.00 for everything.

We bought D a larger pumpkin for him to decorate. He went crazy and created something that has about 50 legs and enough hair to make Big Foot jealous.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


Getting ready to start my EEG.

Fake sleeping during EEG. I had to completely relax and keep my eyes closed for 20 minutes.

The aftermath.

So all my tests are done, now I just wait. I wasn't able to get my Radiologist Report today. You have to mail/fax/email a request, they then have 14 days to respond. I'll send the request tomorrow but I'm sure I'll see my Neuro before they get here.

My appointment to go over all tests results is next Thursday, the 29th. Between now and then, I'm just going to chill. These may be my last 8 days of being 'free' of an incurable disease.

Once I get the results, either way they go, I'll share with you after all family members have been told.

Thank you for your support. :)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Pumpkin Patch Kids...Get It?

Frazier's Pumpkin Patch

So Cute!

The Perfect Pumpkin for Bean.

D had a soccer game to go to after this. We don't let him just walk around dressed like that. His team won 10-0 by the way. Go GOLD RUSH!

LOTS of Pumpkins!

Strike a pose.

Well, maybe not that pose. It looks like Bean is poopin' on a pumpkin.

He's such a good big brother.

A 'Big Brother' sized pumpkin.

A good day.

Monday, October 19, 2009

See You Wednesday LLU

I'm headed back to the doctor's office, actually the neurodiagnostics lab, this Wednesday.

I'll have another EEG and a Visual Evoked Potential test. This time the EEG will only take about 45 minutes and I'll have to come in drowsy. My appointment is at 1pm and I can only sleep a few hours the night before. No caffeine. That drive should be fun. If you live near the 15, the 215, and probably the 10 too (in CA), you may wanna steer clear. :) Just kidding. It'll be fine.

I'm not sure if I'll be able to get these results right away. I'll probably end up waiting until my next neuro appointment to hear.

However, while I'm at LLU, I'll pick up my Radiologist Report from that office and hopefully make sense of the spinal MRI.

I'll share when I can.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Spinal MRI


Yesterday was my MRI of the Cervical and Thoracic (sounds like a dinosaur) Spine. It was at a different place then my last MRI because of the Doc change of course. I didn't think it was possible for this MRI to be any louder then the first one but surprise, surprise, this one was.

I went in a 7:30pm with a slight headache. I finished at 9pm with the sound of fog horns ringing in both ears and a massive headache. She gave me ear phones that were playing classical music but really, what's the point? I heard maybe one song throughout the entire hour and a half.

I don't know if I've mentioned this before but I don't handle IV's or getting my blood drawn very well, or in this case the contrast.* For me, it's not the prick or even the feel of the stuff going in that bothers me, it's the thought. I think about a needle hanging out of my arm and blood and....yuck! Anyway, I'm known for passing out.

So the radiologist asks me before I even go in, "How are your veins?" And luckily, they're great! So I tell her that but I also inform her that I don't handle that kind of stuff well and so on. When the time came for the contrast, all was fine until I see what looks like water flying towards my face. I close my eyes and then she quickly asks if I'm alright. "Yes," I say. She then tells me to NOT move my arm no matter what and that she has to go and get some more contrast. Great!


So I'm sitting there, thinking about a needle hanging out of my arm, wondering if I'm bleeding or what's happeneing. Of course I can't see because I have all this padding crap around my head and a metal bridge-looking thing going over my neck. In my mind I'm thinking, "Come on Lady! Hurry it up!" I keep looking at the beautiful (artifical) scenary that's postered on the ceiling panels and trying to think of something else. Anything else.

Finally, what felt like 10 minutes but was probably only 2, she came back. She finished up the contrast, taped the "wound", and sent me back into the tomb of (noisy) death. I hate it when I'm in there. I've only done it twice but with both times, I've been ready to scream right at the moment before they pull me out.

I received a copy of my scans (obviously) and have shared a couple of the clearest pics with you. I'm no doctor but I have a pretty good idea of what I'm looking at. If I'm right, I'm screwed!

* Contrast - Contrast dye is a solution that is used to accentuate specific structures when looking at an image. Injected into your blood vessels. Fun! Fun!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Knock! Knock! Knock!

Nope! That's not me at your door.

If you're lucky enough to not have needed an MRI, the Knock! Knock! Knock! is the lovely sound you hear while in one. Better then DING...DONG... I guess.

Today's the day.

2 MRI's and a side of (Cheesecake Factory) Cheesecake for me please!

I hope to get a CD of the scans this evening but if the radiologist isn't able, I'll have to get them on Monday. And when I receive them, I'll be sure to share a picture of my spine with you. Just like I did with my brain.

Yup! That's really MY brain. Cool Huh!

I'll be back with an update asap and another post showing you all the great things I've been receiving in the mail lately. Hint: It ain't all that great. Medical crap!

Wanna hear something funny?

Bean learned a bad word from her mommy. Ok, that part isn't funny. But for me, I don't consider it a bad word. It's Dammit!, a word that comes out of my mouth daily and was obviously picked up on by mini me.

She'll be playing with her blocks and then one will fall, "DAMMIT!" she'll say. At first it was hilarious but now, I've been able to hold in my laugh long enough to tell her "No!" and explain that that word isn't nice. It's just so funny that she uses it in the right context.

So....I had to tell my story in order to tell Seans. Muah Ha Ha Ha Ha!!!!

This morning he got Bean up and she came into the bedroom with us. After Sean climbed back into bed, the dogs attacked him with kisses. He said, "Fuckin' dogs!". LMAO!!! Well, of course Bean was right there and he said it loud enough for her to hear.

For the next 3 minutes she kept saying, "Fuckin' dogs! Fuckin' dogs!, Fuckin' dogs!" We were cracking up! Sean couldn't hold it together long enough to tell her to stop. Luckily, she hasn't said it since.

"Dammit!" still seems to be her favorite word. I'm sad to admit it, but she's a lot like me. But not when I was a child, she's a lot like me now.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

26lbs vs 164lbs - Who Wins?

BEAN is our WINNER!!! Obviously, the 26 pounder.

Lola may be HUGE but she is such a big baby.
See for yourself...

She loves to sleep with a blanket. She pulls it over half her body and her face, all on her own. I usually help with the rest.

LOL! I think she's too big to lay in this position but it's impossible to move her.

She's a great dog. We're very happy we adopted her.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Can You Guess...

What I'm Doing Friday Night?

Date Night?


Mini Getaway?



Nope! Dammit!

I'm having 2 MRI's done. Woot! Woot!

But really, it's a good thing. It means I'll get answers soon, and MRI's aren't so bad. I just need to remember to not wear any metal so I don't have to put on their paper undies and gown. NOT cute!

When it's all done, maybe I'll reward myself with a slice of cheesecake, with strawberries. Mmm Mmm good! I'm always looking for a reason to eat cheesecake.

My appointment is at 8pm so I probably won't get my Radiologist Report until Monday, or maybe even Tuesday. I learned how to break'em down and understand them after my brain MRI (these 2 are of the spine). I'll share my thoughts on the RR when I can.


It's supposed to rain tomorrow. YAY!

Thank you to my readers for all your prayers and well wishes...

Monday, October 12, 2009

A Party

We had D's birthday party yesterday, we celebrated at Dave & Buster's. We all had a lot of fun. Sean and I were especially happy to not have to clean up.

Here we all are, on our way to D&B

Bean was sleepy. D, just happy.

The Handsome Hubs.


We arrived a little early but the kids entertained themselves with games.

The Birthday Boy.

Daddy's clone. She perked up once we got to D&B.

The boys. We invited a few girls but none of them came.

The hubs, on napkin patrol. I'm guessing.

He had fun.

The cake. I guess there's no point in calling him "D" when his name is clearly printed on the cake. :) We didn't have a theme so we just went with his (current) favorite movie.

Singing, Happy Birthday to You...

We were able to rack in almost 2,000 tickets for him and his sis. They both picked stuffed animals. What a surprise.

Thank you to everyone who came.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

I'm Fine

I'm Tired

Tired of reading about MS. Tired of looking over all the drugs that I can shoot myself up with to (hopefully) help slow the process of MS. Tired of wondering what my life will be like in 30 years. Or even in 5 years.




I was talking with my lovely husband last night. For him, I think it's hard to take it all in. He can handle most things but when it comes to his 'Sugarplum', he doesn't take things well. (Where's my blushing icon?)

We talked about me. We talked about MS. We talked about me, with MS. And that.....It's likely.

I told him he could RUN, and I wouldn't blame him.

But he didn't. Of course.

He's a wonderful man. Most of the time. ;)

He said even if they say, "Sarah, you have MS." he still wouldn't believe it. He'd accept it, but he wouldn't believe it. We're both a little, lost. Well, maybe 'lost' isn't the right word. We know where the hell we are, and we know all the shit that's going on, we just don't feel like it's really happening to us. It's not denial, it's not lost, maybe it's just disbelief.

I still have only cried twice. Go me! My referrals came in this morning so Monday I'll start scheduling my tests. I thought I only had one more MRI to do but I have two. One of the Cervical Spine and the other of the Thoracic Spine. Basically, from the base of my skull to the top of my ass. :) Then the VEP and the EEG.

These are tests I can handle on my own. The Hubs will HAVE to be present on D day, October 29th. At least if the diagnosis comes back with MS, I'll be able to binge on Halloween candy a few days later.

All and all, we're ok.

I remember my mom would always get on me for saying, "fine". She'd ask, "How are you?" and I'd always say, "I'm fine". And she'd say, "Fine! Fine! You're always fine!" These were in the days when talking to my mother wasn't at the top of my ''To-Do" list. Teenager.


I say a little bit more than just "fine".

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Spice of Life

I looked through all of D's photos yesterday and pulled out a few (ok more like 35), to share in my last post. After looking through them I remembered how free spirited & silly he is, or once was.

He's growing up and there's a few things that've changed.

His shorts have to go down to is knees. Preferably right past his knees.

No kissies or "I Love You's" in front of his friends.

Instead of making silly faces in pics, he chuckin' the deuce.


the other day he picked out an $89.99 pair of shoes. KIDS SHOES! $89.99! Ge'ez. What happened to being satisfied with a $.99 toy or diggin' the cheap properly priced shoes at Target?

Anyway, this post is sort of umm...sporadic.

My BIG baby is growing up and my little baby was born with the attitude of a 16 year old.

The Hubs and I have been trying to think of a good name for Bean when she's in one of her moods. I think I've found it.


She brings it. Everyday. No matter how I feel about it.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Happy Birthday D! - Picture Heavy

So many memories...

so many more to come.