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Thank you for visiting Grandma's Briefs, where I write on the good, bad, humorous and heartwarming of being a baby boomer, grandparent, parent to adult children, wife and writer. Peruse the place, leave a comment or two, and feel free to email me any time at

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Lisa (me) and Jim (aka PawDad)

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Brianna (oldest daughter) and hubby Patrick with his son James 

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Megan (middle daughter) with hubby Preston and Declan, Camden, and Brayden

youngest and her fiance
Andrea (youngest daughter) and hubby Matt


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    Twenty-one years of MS, plus the GRAND Social

    MS Walk

    Yay! Today is my anniversary! It's kind of a funky one to celebrate, as it's the anniversary of the date that I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. But I've done so well, I can't help but celebrate and share.

    On Mother's Day 21 years ago, Jim literally carried me through the doors of the hospital emergency room so we could figure out why I couldn't walk and was losing my vision. My legs had gone numb a few weeks earlier, on April 24. I vividly recall the date because it was the night of a school carnival, where I'd helped man the booths at my daughters' elementary school. My feet were numb after the event, and the numbness progressively worsened, as did my vision. My general physician responded to my daily calls about the problem by telling me it was "just stress."

    Long story short, thanks to a new doctor, I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, told I'd likely never walk and possibly never see again. I was a young mother with young children, and I was scared to death. But I quickly learned the MS diagnosis wasn't a death sentence, that they were (thankfully!) wrong about my walking and vision, and that life goes on. In the past 21 years, I've learned many other important lessons about myself and my world that I wouldn't have without the MS. In many ways, it's been a blessing.

    That said, though, it's a blessing I'd never wish upon others — especially not anyone I love, especially because not everyone is as fortunate as I have been in terms of progression of the disease. Which is why I support the annual MS Walk — which this year celebrates its 25th anniversary — and am once again walking in it this coming Saturday. Brianna has been instrumental in getting me to do it, and we first walked together in 2008. I finished the walk, but I could barely walk after crossing the finish line (Brianna even had to bring the car to me as I couldn't get to it). Because of that, it took me several years to get up the nerve to do it again. Finally, last year, we gave it another shot, and Andrea joined us. I did well, we had a great time, and we're doing it again this year.

    Here's a little plug for Walk MS 2013:

    I tend to shy away from fundraising efforts, even for great causes. But when I wrote about the walk after completing it last year, several readers asked why I didn't mention it before the walk so they could support me. So this year I offer here — with no obligation or expectation — the link to my MS Walk 2013 webpage, where you can sponsor my walk, if you feel so moved. If so, thank you from the bottom of my heart. And thank you all, in advance, for crossing your fingers and sending good thoughts my way as I tackle MS Walk 2013 with Brianna and Andrea at my side. I look forward to sharing with you photos of our success!

    Plus, there's another anniversary of sorts: Today's GRAND Social is the FIFTY-THIRD one here on Grandma's Briefs! Thank you for participating once again!

    link party

    How it works:

    • All grandparent bloggers are invited to add a link. You don't have to blog specifically about grandparenting, but you must be a grandparent who blogs.
    • To link up, copy the direct URL to the specific post — new or old — that you want to share, not the link to your blog's home page. Then click the blue "Click here to enter" text below and follow the directions to add your post and graphic to the list.
    • You can add up to three posts, but no duplicates, please, and none you have promoted on a previous GRAND Social linky. And no contests, giveaways, or Etsy sites, please.
    • Adding a mention at the bottom of your linked posts, such as This post has been linked to the GRAND Social linky, is appreciated. Or, you can post the GRAND Social button anywhere on your page using the following code:


    <a href="" target="_blank"><img src=" " alt="Grandma’" width="125" height="125" /></a>


    • The GRAND Social linky is open for new posts through Wednesday evening, so please come back to see those added after your first visit.
    • If you're not a blogger, you have the pleasure of being a reader. Bloggers who link up would be honored to have one and all — bloggers and readers — visit, read and, if so moved, comment, even if just a "Hey, stopping by from the GRAND Social."

    Thank you for participating in the GRAND Social!


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    Reader Comments (19)

    All the best in this important endeavor!

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterOlga

    One of my childhood friends had MS all of her adult life. Her's was aggressively progressive. I'm thrilled to read that you participated in the walk and can't wait to see the pics!

    Popping in from Oh, Mrs. Tucker!

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMrs. Tucker

    Congratulations! And, for having the persistence to know your own body and finding another doctor who could help. My brother went through a similar thing when his infant son was not responding to a pediatrician who just kept telling him to give him baby aspirin, wait and watch. A new pediatrician correctly diagnosed Reye's Sydrome, said he'd meet my brother at the hospital and later told him his son had been within hours of going into a coma. Son now grown up with children of his own. Here's to happy outcomes!

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCarol Covin

    WOW Lisa! How wonderful that you are able to participate. What a story you have to tell, a great encouragement to others. Congrats and can't wait to hear about this years walk. Thanks for hosting :)

    Family Home and Life

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterConnie

    Happy Anniversary? You are such a strong woman and you set such an amazing example for others. If I could be there to walk with you I would. I am so glad you have overcome so much so far -- here is to continued success! And thanks for hosting us.

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterGrandma Kc

    Amazing Lisa! :) Thank goodness that you found a doctor that paid attention to symptoms rather than chalk it up to stress and be dismissive of you and what was really going on!

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterdebra @ homespun

    Yes, my sweet daughter, you have been an inspiration to all of us who are fortunate enough to know you! Especially those of us who were there with you, Jim and your daughters during the awful time of your finally being correctly diagnosed. Thank you for continually being strong enough to come shining through your many trials. Magnificent success in this next "run"!

    And, thanks for this current Grand Social; so much to check out and learn about.

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAnn

    Lisa, I had no idea you faced this challenge. Have a great walk with family.

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBarb

    You are an amazingly strong woman and yes, a great inspiration. The secret, of course, is to just keep on keeping on. Blessings to you and yours.

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterQMM

    Wow, I can see how a diagnosis like that would scare anyone, let alone a young mom. So glad you've been lucky (and probably smart as well) in managing it.

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBLissed-Out Grandma

    What a heart moving story Lisa, thank you for sharing part of your life with us. You display such courage & bravery which is what I do so admire about you. Thank goodness the doctors got it wrong. Hope your walk goes well, look forward to hearing all about it. Sending you hugs from across the oceans.

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSally Kabak

    I am so proud of you for so many reasons. For your brave battle, for your optimism, for your strength of character and for simply being you.

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCathy

    Congratulations! As one who currently does well to walk from my door to my car ... I am encouraged by those who don't let their *limitations* limit them!

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBeth Zimmerman

    Wow ! Congratulations Lisa! I didn't know; not sure if you've ever told your public! What an inspiration you are to us all! You have shown how important it is to pay attention to our bodies and pursue any concerns. Thank you for this peek into your amazing life and the amazing support you get from your family. I love the comments from your biggest fan....your Mom!
    What a sweetheart she is :)
    Joan gramcrackercrumbs

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJoan Stommen

    Oh my goodness! Thank you, everyone! Your kind words mean so much to me and your generosity truly and completely floors me. Thank you for both. I am so very blessed to have you all in my life. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    Cheers and hugs to all!

    ~ Lisa

    Thank you for sharing your story. I really enjoy reading your blogs. You are very encouraging. Reminds me that most things in life are accomplished in small bits over your story encourages me to keep moving with whatever I'm facing. 21 years and here you are!! Congradulations.

    May 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMandy

    This was wonderful Lisa and I feel so touched that you shared this with us. Cannot wait to meet you IRL after reading you for this past year. You are very special. L.

    May 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterGrown and Flown

    Thanks for sharing, Lisa. I admire you even more than before (not your intent, I know.) I have some health issues and am drawing inspiration from your example. Good luck on the walk!

    May 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterbelinda

    Lisa wishing you all the best this weekend while you are walking. Sending you all the good juju we can muster to help you get to the finish line. Even though it's not easy to share something so personal it warms our hearts to know that you did!! All the best on Saturday!! We'll be cheering for you from California.

    May 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterRenee Spindle
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