Name: Alexandra Levin
Diagnosed: The summer of 2005, after I had my first and only episode. I woke up one morning and couldn’t walk. I thought, Oh my God, I must have drunk too much last night!
Occupation: Municipal bond trader
Hobbies: Figure skating, high altitude mountaineering, rock climbing, piano, reading, yoga, salsa
What movement means to me: Freedom
One thing I’ve learned about MS that I want to tell you: Workplaces don’t necessarily make adjustments, because they just assume you’ll leave. I’m very lucky my office didn’t do that. They don’t think of me as “the sick person,” which is my biggest fear, but they do understand I have something serious I have to deal with, and they help me.
What I’ve done to Join the Movement: I find ways to connect with other people who have MS. My chapter’s young adult workshops are great. And I’m starting a new nonprofit to connect people with activity-based fundraising opportunities.
The moment I knew I can handle anything: Summer ’06. I’m in a hot, dusty little airport in Senegal. I don’t speak French. I know no one. My bags are lost. I’ve forgotten my Avonex. I have this absurd optimism that I can come out of challenges on top.
What I’m doing: Aggressive, aggressive, aggressive fundraising. I see hundreds of people at work, so as I walk by, I’ll bring it up in conversation.