Hi! I’m Maggie and I live near Windsor, Ontario. Let me tell you a little about myself. I am married and have an adult son. Also, I am a stepmom to two teenage boys. We have two dogs, a German Shepard (Biscuit) and a Labradoodle named (Ella). Ella runs the house! Speaking of the house, we live on a riverfront and I have amazing views to take in. I love watching the water and taking photos.
I want to tell you about my life because it's important to explain my life before this disease. In order to advocate for better research and treatment, I want to highlight the before and after.
I joined the Canadian Forces Reserve when I was 18 years old. I only just retired nearly three decades later. I loved the challenge and would push myself physically always. I loved rappelling, driving armoured vehicles, and even the nonsense that comes with the job. I was always smiling and I made some wonderful friends.
I became a police officer when I was twenty years old and continued working in the reserves as often as my schedule would allow.
While working both jobs, I returned to school, first at the University of Windsor and then at Athabasca University, where I obtained a Bachelor of Professional Arts in Criminal Justice.
I started noticing I was having pain and getting sick frequently. I would have an infection after infection. I really would basically work and come home and have to lay down. I was beyond exhausted and I was having circular patches of hair fall out with severe pain in my hands and joints. I can only describe it as an intense horrible flu.
I was first diagnosed first with Lupus, then with severe fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis in every joint when I was forty-eight years old. I already was dealing with two chronic health issues. A broken ankle at work, which required two surgeries over a period of years and following the birth of my son, three surgeries which led to the discovery of endometriosis.
I am being detailed, Most health issues are not straight forward and many people have multiple disorders and issues. This obviously complicates diagnosis and getting in front of the right physician.
I continued to work to the best of my ability. However, in October 2019, I had a transient ischemic attack and now have nerve pain and weakness. I sometimes have difficulty walking, holding, or lifting items. I have nerve pain and muscle spasms and pain that is frequently not in control.
Now, I am learning how to be a fibro fighter and manage the challenge of this new disorder’ ed life. Also, I am a novice patient leader at WEGO Health and wish to advocate for fibromyalgia and other chronic health issues.
First of all, I have so many hobbies. I am a fanatic about genealogy and love the history and joy in helping someone learn about their ancestors. I enjoy thrifting, antiquing, and old houses. Basically anything vintage, shabby chic, or upcycled. I do enjoy sewing, quilting, and reading. I have so many favorite books and writers that I enjoy.