Kate was diagnosed with MS in 2006, when she was just 18 years old, having experienced symptoms since she was 15. Kate experienced months of chronic dizziness, vertigo and balance issues before her diagnosis. In years before, she had even experienced vision issues and numbness in her hand and leg. The incidents were temporary and happened at different times- making it very hard to connect the symptoms.
“I did my best to stay rational and not catastrophise, but despite his assurances I couldn’t help thinking of wheelchairs and nursing homes when I’d barely started uni.”
Today, Kate is passionate about MS awareness and communicating how the diagnosis is not the end for a young person- life can still be amazing.
Kate says that her MS hasn’t stopped her from doing things- she just has to adjust how she does things. She loves staying active; enjoying yoga, short hikes and even getting back into playing squash.
“More than anything, I want to tell young people diagnosed with MS that this disease is not the end of their stories. Life may be challenging at times, but it is still every part as exciting and amazing, and dreams are still very much achievable – just sometimes in a slightly different way.”
Kate finished her Uni degree in 2011 and has been enjoying her full-time work as an IT professional since. She is also an involved member of her MS community and MS Queensland has been with Kate on her journey since the early days.
“The incredible staff have been involved in so many aspects of my life; helping me to access health and education programs, providing medication training, assisting me on my NDIS journey, and assisting with establishment of our local young people’s support group.”
For Kate, the MS Swimathon is a great day in the pool celebrating community and friendship whilst raising funds for an incredibly important cause.