<<World MoyaMoya Day
I do so hope that today brings enlightenment to those who have never heard of this disease and that by doing that strides are made to help you who have it.
…From Gini Watson (my soon-to-be mother in law):
6 May, 2015
To my family…
This message made my morning. ☀️☀️☀️
Today is World Moyamoya Day.
-I hope that each of you will take a precious moment or two from your busy Wednesday to meditate upon what World Moyamoya Day means to you or someone you know.
I ask that you take a moment to promote awareness through word of mouth and social media, or to
share this (still, mostly) unofficial day in whatever way feels best to you.
…I wear two bracelets each and every day on my left wrist: the first says “B-Cause” and below that, the second says “Stroke Happens.”
In a matter of moments, lives are changed irrevocably when stroke happens: not just to the stroke survivor, but to everyone whose life he or she touches.
In a matter of moments, stroke can, in many cases, be treated…
It happens so fast.
Thus, the acronym for stroke awareness, utilized by hospitals and health organizations world-wide: FAST.
F= facial drooping
A= arm weakness or numbness
S= difficulty speaking or slurred speech
T= Time (if you or someone you know experiences any of these symptoms, call 911 immediately. Even if the symptoms abate, call 911 and go to the hospital immediately!)
It happened to me.
Many of you know my story.
After showing symptoms such as those listed above, my friends called 911. I am forever grateful they did, because I was, in fact, having a stroke.
-I am certain that call saved my life.
The stroke I had at that time was on the left side of my brain: I was rendered speechless, paralyzed and in and out of consciousness for seven days at UCLA Medical Center. After many many many grueling tests, brain scans, and other diagnostic tools, I was diagnosed with Moyamoya Disease.
…It’s hard to believe, but on the 13th of this month (my momma’s birthday, poor thing!!!), it will have been 9 years since that day.
–Almost a decade.
That realization leaves me breathless — almost speechless, again!
In Moyamoya Disease, a syndrome that affects approximately one in two million people, stroke is the NUMBER ONE side effect, created when the arteries that bring vital blood and oxygen to the brain narrow to the point of occlusion, or total closure.
-It is an incurable disease.
-There appears to be a genetic component to it; it may be hereditary.
-It occurs most often in children and in people in their early to mid life. This is not a population we associate with stroke risk. Thus it is so often missed, misdiagnosed and misunderstood.
What happens then?
This is a scary truth.
But strides are being made daily by pioneers in medicine, advocacy and law who make it their mission to learn everything they can about Moyamoya Disease and how best to treat it and bring awareness about the illness to the public and private sectors.
Take a breath.
Think about the difference you can make today and every day.
Share your story.
Tell someone how Moyamoya Disease has affected your life.
You may save a life one day because of this simple act.
Thank you for letting me share with you on this beautiful spring day.