May 15th – MPS Awareness Day
I did intend to plan something this year. Something to raise money and get noticed. Make some noise and increase people’s awareness of mucopolysaccharidosis. It’s not really in my nature to draw attention to myself, even so I felt it was something that I should do.
But I haven’t planned anything at all.
To be honest, the last couple of months I’ve wanted to stick my head in the sand and pretend that MPS just doesn’t exist. But of course, my son doesn’t have that luxury. The effects that MPS has had on his brain stop him from knowing what it is doing to him. But I am very aware.
I am aware that his breathing is louder than it was, and he needs to rest more often again.
I am aware that many of his hard-won skills, such as pointing to head, toes or eyes, have faded away.
I am aware that he hasn’t grown in the last six months and is now on the 9th centile for his age (up until he was four he was on or above the 75th centile).
I am aware that he has lost most of the words that he was using.
I am aware that the treatments that should be stopping all this from happening are prevented from doing so by his own amazing immune system.
And most of all I’m aware of what all that MEANS. It means that unless something else can be done we are watching our vital, happy little boy die very slowly in front of our eyes.
Since we moved to our new house six months ago, the practicalities of our situation have been a lot easier to deal with, but emotionally the reality of MPS does hit me hard at times. So although I haven’t planned any awareness events, what I can do – what I have always done – is write.
I write about our experience so that others can learn about MPS; so newly diagnosed families can feel a little less alone. I write to save my sanity and hope that I spread awareness that way.
All the current research points to the fact that the earlier MPS is diagnosed the better; the few existing treatments (and new ones coming through) are much more effective early on while the body is still developing and before too much damage is done. So, please, for Pudding’s sake this MPS Awareness Day wear blue, share a post or two, donate if you can, and spread the word.
I’ll be wearing my blue wig and MPS T-shirt all day, and spreading awareness where I can. Who’ll be joining me?