One day after a strength training gym workout at home, Taylor lost control of the left side of her body. The feeling came and went but concerned her every time.
After many doctor visits, she was eventually given a referral for an MRI but it involved getting her piercings taken out professionally, so she initially put it off.
Then, one morning her symptoms returned but this time they were intensified.
Taylor says, “I felt numbness on the left side of my face. It was tingling and I heard that maybe if the left side of your face is affected, you’re going through a stroke. So, I went to the mirror to smile, and it was completely fine.”
Still, Taylor was worried.
“Coincidentally my husband had the day off work, so we went to get my piercings taken out and got the MRI.”
“Within hours, I was dragging my left leg on the floor trying to walk. My partner took me straight to the hospital.
“Within hours, I was paralysed on the left side of my body. I could not move my arm or leg.”
The doctors looked up her MRI results and referred her to a neurologist where Taylor was diagnosed multiple sclerosis. Treatment began and Taylor underwent intensive rehabilitation and physiotherapy to learn to use her arm and leg again.
“I couldn’t walk or get changed. I couldn’t do simple things like brush my hair or teeth as I am left-handed. I had to get a shower chair and a friend lent me a wheelchair and walker.
“I couldn’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. I didn’t know what MS was at the time.”
“Today I can walk again and use my arm again but I do struggle every single day.”
Taylor is unstoppable. She set her goals high.
“I wanted to be running by Christmas. I was running by Christmas. I didn’t look very good running but I got there. My husband was there to support me every step of the way.”
Taylor still lives with painful pins & needles, numbness and tingling in the left side of her body, as well as heat intolerance, constant headaches and severe fatigue.
“The heat intolerance is a very real thing. Even in wintertime, I’m wearing a singlet or standing outside to cool down. When I do get hot it makes my symptoms worsen. It is also very hard because people don’t understand as they can’t see or feel what I am going through.”
“It’s not a fun thing and I wouldn’t wish it upon my worst enemy.”
“Looking at me no one would know I have MS. It’s hard for people to believe that I even have it. I hide it from people as I don’t want it to define me or rule my life.”
MS strikes young people in the prime of their lives, right when they are building careers and planning families.
Taylor is just 27. Her treatment for MS has meant she had to delay plans of starting a family.
“That was something that was so hard for me and my husband.”
Taylor is motivated to fundraise for the 2023 Sydney MS Walk Run + Roll by making a brighter future for herself and others living with MS.
This amazing fundraiser has already raised an incredible $3,515.12 and counting. Let’s give her a round of applause.