Hello. Let me start by saying I have NEVER in my life participated in any type of blog, etc. But I find sometimes this disorder gets to be more than I can handle and I find great comfort looking at the stories. Like others, I feel I am not crazy when I identify with almost every story I read.
I have not been officially diagnosed, and I have not undergone MRIs, cat scans, or neurological testing. The farthest I have gone was my GP, ENT, who sent me to a physical therapist, who basically did some maneuvers and said, “Well, we ruled out the scary stuff but I can’t help you.”
Mine started while on a 7-day cruise in Hawaii in September 2015, a dream all-expense-paid vacation from my husband’s employer for his 30 years of service! MdDS is the souvenir I brought home with me. I thought I was going nuts! My boat never stopped rocking, bobbing, swaying, pulling. I felt like I was constantly walking on a trampoline. And those aisles in a grocery store… forget it! This lasted for a year and a half. Then I got a really bad ear infection. My ENT cauterized something in my ear and treated me with steroids and antibiotics. And my world became still! I stayed this way for about 10 months. Then I dealt with a severe setback with an autoimmune disease I also have, right in the middle of an extremely stressful time. I was distraught with these other things in my life, and the rocking, swaying and bobbing began again. This time it lasted for about 10 months.
Then it just stopped.
I was hesitant to go white water rafting for the first time last summer with family and friends. But I thought, “Screw it! I am not gonna live my life in fear,” and it was great! So I got a reprieve for another ~10 months. Something has triggered it again, and this time is more bothersome and exhausting. I don’t even know what could’ve brought it on, other than we have been doing a lot of DIY home improvement and I have been climbing up and down ladders and stools.
Even before I started researching this condition, I knew my only reprieve or sense of normalcy was riding in a car. Sometimes on my lunch break, I just drive! I refuse to let this rule me. And as I prepare for my first grandchild in August, I refuse to let this stand in my way of being active and involved in her life!
I know there are so many more devastating and debilitating diseases that people deal with so I try not to feel too sorry for myself. And I do find comfort in reading your stories, and knowing that I am not alone in the boat. I hope my story helps you know that neither are you.
Cruise-triggered, 51 at onset
June is MdDS Awareness Month, and now is the perfect time to share your experiences and tell your story. We’ve put together some guidelines designed to help you write it and be selected for publication here: mddsfoundation.org/stories/#submit-your-mdds-story.