In late June, PatientsLikeMe Head of Business Development David Williams received an email from his high school classmate Bill Ogden. Bill needed help, you see. He and his wife were preparing to take part in the Mid-Michigan Multiple Sclerosis Bike Tour, which covers 150 miles over two days. Bill explained that they were riding in support of one of his old friends John Rafter (pseudonym), who was diagnosed with MS in 2001.
PatientsLikeMe donated $750 towards Bill’s fundraising goal. We salute everyone out there who steps up in support of patients they know and love, not to mention those they’ve never even met.
See the picture of the team with their PatientsLikeMe t-shirts!
At PatientsLikeMe, we believe in getting to know the person, not just the “patient.” That’s why we’ve decided to interview one member each month to find out more about how he or she approaches life. This month we are pleased to feature Joy, a one-star member.
What inspires you?
Everything inspires me. The very scale of life rocks and sways me. A sunset inspires me to find more color in my own life. A bird in flight invites me to find more easy joy and laughter. A tree inspires me to appreciate my roots and my ability to bend to survive and to realize that I only grow more beautiful with age. A flower inspires in me a consciousness of just how beautiful and fragile life can be. My granddaughter inspires in me a belief in the mystery of creation. And my dad inspires in me a belief in myself. My mother inspires in me strength and endurance. And my husband inspires in me a desire to love most deeply. My soul sister inspires in me a genuine and profound trust. My son inspires in me a purpose and reason in life. And my dogs inspire in me a desire to approach each day with excitement and a willingness to accept the gifts of the life graciously. Someone in need inspires in me a desire to give. And when a friend reaches out to me, they inspire hope. Every brush with life inspires me on to the next moment.
What’s the funniest thing that’s ever happened to you?
No one event jumps out at me as funniest. What I remember most are hundreds of moments of belly laughs in my life. The funniest thing that has happened in a while had to do with my underwear, my dog and our visiting kids (my son, my daughter-in-law and our granddaughter). I was folding clothes from the dryer, and my dog stole a pair of my underwear and made a game of ‘chase’ out of it. Everyone was yelling and running, trying to catch him with my pink underwear on his head and wrapped around one leg. “He went that way!” “WATCH out, he’s behind you!” “Wait, wait, I think I’ve got him!” It was funny and embarrassing, but we were all weak with laughter by the time the dog fell to the carpet exhausted. Game finally over.
What is your favorite place and why?
I love to be deep in the forest where it’s quiet and cool. I like to shop so the mall is interesting. Restaurants are a favorite place of mine too. My husband and I discuss the menu, and he orders for me. I feel like his queen when he does. But my most favorite place in the world is home. Home is where I find comfort, refuge and well-being. It is home where I am surrounded by love.
What do you like best about PatientsLikeMe?
I love the ability to graph out MS progression and keep track of all my medications and symptoms. This will come in handy for doctor visits. The graphs are also very revealing in that I can track exacerbations and connect the dots. What I love most about PatientsLikeMe though is the feeling of community and a sense of warm and open invitation to everyone. This is a wonderful time to say thank you to the administrators and support folks here. You work so hard and listen so well to our suggestions. Thank you to all the members and caregivers here too. You’ve made PatientsLikeMe our community.