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My name is Chris Altman and I am the longtime boyfriend of Ms. Sharon Mander. This is my story from the eyes and heart of a man that understands and saw firsthand what MS can and does do. It is not my intention to depress anyone, but I write in a hope that it will give encouragement to the husbands or boyfriends or family and yes, the significant other in someone's life. During the few years before we finally found out about her MS, I was stressed beyond what I thought I could handle. I watched a woman that I love more than life going downhill, and I was literally helpless to do anything. We knew something was wrong but we couldn't even get a neurologist to examine her because as one doctor said ..." we are only taking younger patients". I went ballistic. I was disheartened and felt discouraged completely.
The Phase of Anger and Disappointment
My anger at the entire medical system was intense, but I finally found a way to turn that into something positive and began a search for what we believed was going on. Finally, a few years ago a doctor sent us to a local neurologist and after one MRI and an exam; we were told what we felt. Sharon was diagnosed with MS. I was devastated and didn't know what to do.
Before We Met Dr. Rebeca Lopez
Between that time of the diagnosis and the time we went to see Dr. Rebeca Lopez in Mexico, we both began a study online about MS and what could we do to stop it or at least slow it down. Hundreds of hours reading and educating ourselves about the cause, treatments, and the effects of what it would eventually do to her. I braced myself for the worst. I am a little ashamed to say that, but I thought this will be the end. My hopes and spirit were all exhausting and coming to an end.
My Constant Desperation to Help Sharon
So as time went on I became more desperate and more determined to find some way to help her. She was constantly in pain and could seldom walk 50 feet across our yard. To see a woman you love that was a model, full of vibrant life and energy, and a woman with a passion for everything from saving the whales to feeding baby birds not be able to do this any longer was devastating to her and to myself. She no longer had the strength to ride her horse, or take walks with me, walk the dog or much of anything. So, I started doing all the things she used to enjoy doing. I did laundry, cleaned and mopped floors, vac the carpets, folded clothes, went shopping and so many other things I did that she could no longer enjoy doing. These were things that she always loved doing. She had trouble going up the stairs to go to bed and coming down was a chore where she had to literally scoot herself down step by step. Her pain was eating me up inside and I felt so helpless. But somewhere I always knew we have a chance to get over this.
Frustrating Attempts at the United States
After some frustrating attempts at finding help in the US due to FDA red tape and regulations, Sharon received a call from the medical staff at a clinic in San Diego, referring us to Dr. Rivkah Lopez in Mexico. I remember thinking that maybe this is her chance, and maybe we can get her some help. After talking with her we were convinced that this was where we were going. So, we took a huge step of faith and a leap of courage. We started taking steps to get everything ready to go.
Our Entire Concept Changed In a Moment
What we found were many things but what impressed us was the total professionalism that was shown the entire time we were there. My optimism started getting stronger and my hope stronger than ever before. The total and very genuine caring that was given her and me was way beyond what I even expected. Professional is literally present in every aspect of the therapy. Three days later we came home, and Sharon has her second chance.
Our Journey Began
The day Sharon had received her stem cells was a Tuesday and that afternoon she got up from a wheelchair and walked across the hospital room we had been provided with, with a straight back, sat on the bed with a straight back and crossed her legs. She had not been able to do that for years. I cried real deep down inside with a hope and a joy I had not had in years. Wednesday we came home. Sharon walked through two airports without any stop. This was exciting for us and amazing. She sleeps now a full 8 hours and has little to no pain in her legs, no numbness in her hands or legs; she is also able to go into the REM sleep that she had not had much of in years. We now knew that we are in safe hands now.
The Treatment Adventure
I know we are just getting started on this great adventure of living a life with a second chance, but to all the men or women out there please do not give up. Keep that love of your companion alive and keep it strong. Don't turn away from God in anger but run to him in hope, love, and faith. I am not the best Christian man on this planet for sure, but I know inside he heard me, and he gave her this second chance. When it gets hard, grit your teeth and keep on going, hold the hand of the person with MS, laugh when things are not funny, keep humor alive, trust in your heartfelt and gut felt feelings. Don't shy away when they can't do dishes or laundry but hold them close and let them know you love them. The person with MS is often scared beyond words that you will leave. Don't ever let them think that will happen. I always knew love will win over everything for us.
Thanks to Dr. Lopez and the Medical Staff
Anyway, my deepest respect for Dr. Lopez and her staff. I love all of you folks; I admire your deep desires to help people with MS. So, if anyone takes time to read this, and I hope they do. Know this. Stem cell therapy is a newer medical science, but I believe it is the way for many to get over many diseases and in particular MS.
Thank you, Dr. Lopez. If anyone cares to speak to me my name is Chris Altman and you can call me at my home phone number day or night. If you ask Dr. Lopez for my number I want to help you in any way I can. Call if you get scared, or just need to talk. I am here for anyone that I can encourage. I and Sharon will always thank you.
Chris Altman Sr.
Click the button below to learn more about Stem Cell Treatment for Multiple Sclerosis at Renovation Advanced Therapy Center in Tijuana, Mexico!