I am an emerging fiction writer living in Chicago. While I am a Luddite, I am using the forum because I love to meet new people, especially fellow artists, and learn new things.

Anyone interested in reading my published work can access it through the link under the My Web Site header on this blog. My short story "Life Goes on Without Me" recently won an honorable mention from Conclave: A Journal of Chracter's 2009 Fiction Contest. I am currently working on a novel, new short stories, and a creative non-fiction essay. My friend T.E. Russell has encouraged me to write a screenplay.

And as always, I am still submitting, submitting, submitting.

I look forward to meeting and reading from you.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Knocked Up Week 24: A Visit to Northwestern MS Clinic

Today I visited my neurologist, Bruce Cohen , at Northwestern Medical Faculty Foundation's MS Clinic .  I am pleased to report that not only is my MS stable but that I have made improvement in regards to my mobility and dexterity.  After I talk my walking test, I do a "peg test" where I insert small wooden pegs into the holes of a wooden cube.  My times for both improved by ten seconds.  Pregnancy often helps improve the health of women who live with MS.  These past few months I have felt extremely well -- almost back to my pre-diagnosis days.

However, in the three months after la bimba's birth, I have a 30 to 50% chance of a relapse and complications because of the shift in hormones.  I have been staying active throughout my pregnancy (my next prenatal yoga class starts this Saturday) and eating healthy, but biology and my immune system will have other ideas.  Dr. Cohen did mention to me months ago that there have been some studies showing that breastfeeding has proved not only beneficial for the child but also for the mother who lives with MS.  I do plan to breastfeed.

Still, Dr. Cohen mentioned possibly starting me on IV steroids after I give birth.  They would be given to me while I am still in the hospital.  There is debate among pediatricans about steriods and nursing.  Dr. Cohen told me some are fine with it and some advise against it.  I plan on contacting my pediatrician later this week to find out his views.

Right now, I am leaning toward foregoing the steriods in the early days and weeks; I want the baby  to receive breast milk free of chemicals -- regardless whether Dr. Sagan is fine with it or against it.  It is a fine balance.  I know I am no longer number one, but if I cannot physically care for my baby, what is the trade off?  Yet my baby will be healthier via breast milk versus formula.  The saga continues . . . .

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