The Twisted Tale of Teri

A few weeks ago I finally got around to watching one of the movies I brought back with me from my Dad’s estate, Young Frankenstein staring Gene Wilder – and Teri Garr. She was quite a good actress with a great sense of humour and also good-looking in my opinion. I wondered whatever happened to her. Good ol’ Internet provided an answer.

It seems she stopped acting after being diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, which is a nasty disease that causes somewhat randomized symptoms that come and go and aren’t really the same in any two people. It’s all down to damage to the nerve coating which causes stimulation that “isn’t real” so to speak. The victim feels things that aren’t happening and has motor control problems such as double vision. The affliction can flare up, die down, come back, et cetera. Fatigue is the only thing mentioned as being an across-the-board indicator. There’s no definitive test for diagnosis either.

Hmm. That sounded somewhat familiar in fact. For eight years I’ve been going to one specialist after another complaining of similar symptoms. Most of the doctors were certain they knew what it was and ordered tests – which would then come up negative. They’d then get mad and dismiss me, passing me on to some other would-be genius who would insist they’d get to the bottom of it. And who then wouldn’t.

The last one, after much genetic testing that discovered only anomalies not linked to any known disorder, “closed my file” when she couldn’t categorize the problem. If you don’t understand it, just deny it right? Anyway I’m now up against a medical profession that doesn’t want to hear about it, and certainly doesn’t want any suggestions from a lay person who thinks he has some idea what it is and what tests can be done to indicate for or against it. What would they have to lose anyway? It’s not like they have to undergo the MRI to look for the lesions.

So a weird chance watching a movie and wondering about a performer in it has given me my best possible answer at the moment. It may be wrong. I’m willing to believe that. I’m not willing to believe there’s no problem, because I live with the apparently randomized symptoms every damn day – and they’re getting worse.

That nothing can be done about it doesn’t matter. As it is now with no known explanation nothing can be done about it either. That’s not relevant. What is relevant is that if I know what it actually is I can also know what to expect in progression and can plan ahead as is suitable. Also either way it looks as though that plan needs to be a fairly radical alteration of lifestyle as I’m already having significant problems doing the everyday things that allow for the one I’ve got now. If I’m going to not-so-slowly crumble I want to do it with as little pain and aggravation as possible.

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