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ALS Worldwide
November 01, 2017

Living with ALS MND

Cath with her husband

I have always been a "busy" person, working hard and living life to the fullest. My husband and I have run a  busy cafe/tearoom in a small market town in North Yorkshire for 11 years, where I did the majority of the cooking. We have two grown sons who both have good jobs and girlfriends and a hectic social life. I spent a couple of nights at the gym, a weekly Zumba session and ran about 4 miles a week.

At first, I noticed my right foot wasn't hitting the ground properly. I started tripping up and fell on a few occasions.  I also noticed twitching going on all over my body and cramps, which I had suffered for a couple of years, were getting worse. A visit to the doctor revealed a trapped nerve and I was given physio-therapy. I knew after googling symptoms that it was MND. My husband Ian and I spent hours trying to find something else it might be.

Almost a year later on 2.4.14, I was diagnosed with MND.

We spent that night telling all close family and friends and then went to work the next day as usual. Over the last 3 and a half years we have fundraised and have raised alot of awareness within our area. Last year's challenge was a coast to coast bike ride on a tandem with my sister.  We biked 170 miles. I had to be lifted on and off my bike. We raised £6,200.00.

Each year we hold a dinner dance in our village hall and have raised £4,500.00.

I can only walk with the help of a walker now but since selling the business just over a year ago we converted our garage into a kitchen which is all at sitting height and I run a business cooking meals for local people and icing celebration cakes.

I have had lots of help and support from the local MNDA group and a group that meets weekly for a massage, relaxation and a chat at the butterwick hospice. 

My husband, family and friends have been amazingly supportive.

I have also followed ALS worldwide and learned a lot from other people living with this rotten disease through their stories. I'm glad to be sharing my story with others.