Meet Mason City Walk MS Ambassadors Jeana and Jacquelyn Arbegast, Jeana diagnosed June 2002
I am Jeana Arbegast, and my daughter, Jacquelyn Arbegast, and I are Walk Ambassadors for the 2013 Walk MS event in Mason City, IA. I am the mother of four great kids, with Jacquelyn being the oldest, and they all are a great support system for me. Multiple sclerosis has taken a lot from me, but with the help of my family for support and strength, I am able to take on each day in a new way and stay positive that we will be able to conquer MS. Jacquelyn has worked hard to help raise awareness about MS in her school by running fundraisers and being the Jumpstart MS Scholarship award winner in 2012.
In what way has MS made the biggest impact on your life?
MS has affected the way that I am able to interact with my family and friends. I am unable to play sports with my kids outside and interact with my family the way I would like to.
Why did you decide to participate in Walk MS?
To bring awareness about MS and how it affects everyone differently, and help raise money to find a cure!
What’s your favorite thing about Walk MS?
Seeing all of the people there who are trying to find a cure and talking to others with MS about how it has affected them.
What is one thing you wish people could understand about MS?
Just because someone looks okay on the outside, it doesn’t mean they aren’t hurting. MS affects everyone so differently and a lot of the ways it has affected me are not as obvious to those who don't know me closely.
What is the most important, meaningful or memorable connection you have made since being diagnosed with MS or having someone close to you diagnosed?
I have been touched by how much my kids and husband are protective of me and realize when I am having problems with my MS. They really step up and will give more of themselves to help me and make things easier for me.
What makes you a great walk ambassador?
I have experienced good years and bad years since being diagnosed with MS, and I understand how far we still need to go to let others understand this disease.
What makes your story with MS unique?
I have been affected in many different ways. I have not had luck with many of the medicines that work well for others. Every day can be different and the way the disease has affected me, is just similar in some ways that it has affected others and different at the same time.
Jeana and Jacquelyn may be reached for interviews at firstname.lastname@example.org. To speak with a National MS Society, Upper Midwest Chapter spokesperson, please contact Anna at 612-335-7918 or email@example.com.
Walk MS 2013
Join Jeana and Jacquelyn and thousands of others by getting involved in Walk MS. To learn more, register or donate, visit myMSwalk.org.