Let me introduce you to Katie…
I met Katie on my first day of work. She was the twenty-something girl sitting at the computer next me; instantly I designated her my, “go to for help,” person.
I remember at around 10am asking her a simple question. She didn’t say much, but was nice while she stated the answer. Around 2pm I overheard her make an appointment with a doctor.
Nosy me, as most people do, wondered what that was for, but didn’t think too much of it, a cold? a regular check up? just getting the pill? who knew.
That was the first, and last day I saw Katie for a while. She was in and out of the office over the next few weeks, and through the work grapevine I heard she was sick, very sick, but the doctors didn’t know what was wrong with her.
But luckily, over the next month, I got to slowly know “work, professional Katie,” and instantly liked her. Her sarcasm, wit, and humour made me walk into the office each morning and stand on my tip toes from the door to see if she was at her desk. When she wasn’t, I’d send her a quick text telling her I simply hoped she was hungover, and to make sure she was okay. She never was.
And then one morning, as I was sipping my morning coffee, my boss told me Katie had been diagnosed the night before with Multiple Sclerosis (MS). A few months shy of her thirtieth birthday, and after having never been sick before, Katie had MS. The news took my breath away. I hardly knew this girl next to me, but I wanted to yell at God for her. That seemed so unfair. Not right. I didn’t know what to do.
Despite her high spirits on the phone, and her amazing attitude of, “I’m just pleased the doctors now know what it is,” I felt numb all day. Hell, for that week. My limited view on MS wasn’t good; to me it meant wheel chairs, pain, and dare I say worse?
But now, after two months off work, Katie is back to being my regular desk buddy, and has become so much more than just a “work friend,” or as I call her, my “work wife.” Her sarcasm, humour & wit leaves me with tears in my eyes many days, and our boss is convinced we can’t go anywhere without the other (true story). She is certainly someone I believe I’ll stay in close contact with for years to come, and overall she is someone who has taught me so much about what exactly MS is, and dealing with the cards you’re dealt. She’s put my life & ‘issues’ (oh hi there weight loss) into great perspective, and is a perfect example of shit happens, it sucks, but you figure it out, and life is still good.
I’ll let you read Katie’s personal and honest journey over at her blog, I’m Not Drunk… Wait; I encourage you to follow along & start at the beginning of her story. You’ll a) get a sense of her awesomeness, b) learn about MS (she presents it for dummies like me), and c) get a glimpse into a real life story about someone who went from being a totally fine, wine-drinking, stretchy-pants wearing, “ball breaker,” with the “face of an angel, but mouth of a trucker,” to going blind in one eye (that 1st day we met) and suddenly being diagnosed with a life changing disease.
Ohhhh, and! Katie is also (because it’s all I yabber on about at work) doing Paleo, after some investigative work she learned that eating paleo is one of the best things you can do for yourself if you have MS.
LOVE YOU KATIE,
Love your work wife.