Calvert City - A young mother and wife in Calvert City is fighting her multiple sclerosis after a long journey of not knowing what was wrong with her.  

"It was Oct. 15, 2013, when I got the diagnosis of multiple sclerosis, my mother's birthday," Deshae Harrington said. "I was so relieved that I cried because for so long I knew there was something wrong."

Harrington was 34 with a 9-year-old daughter and a new husband when she got the diagnosis.

"I had heard the words multiple sclerosis from doctors before but I never was able to get a diagnosis,"  Harrington said.  "Before I was diagnosed I had seen neurologists in St. Louis, Nashville and at the Mayo Clinic."

Harrington finally found an answer when she was diagnosed by neurologist Samuel Hunter in Franklin, Tennessee.

"For so long I had been going to doctors trying to find out what was wrong and I felt like people just thought I was trying to get myself diagnosed with something," Harrington said.  

According to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body.   The society provided statistics from Healthline that show more than 400,000 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with MS and in the South the rate of MS is 57 to 78 cases per 100,000 people.   

Harrington said that her main symptoms were weakness and numbness on the left side, tingling, and severe headaches.  She also said that she had to have major back surgery several years ago and doctors have suggested that MS may have been a factor.  

"MS takes things away from you that you have no control over," Harrington said.  "I have been a nurse for 13 years now and I can no longer work, and I hate that."  

Harrington decided to focus her energy on finding a cure for MS and will be participating in a walk titled "Steppin' with Shae" sponsored by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society at 10 a.m. Sept. 13 at Noble Park.   

"My husband, Chris, and my daughter Jayce have supported me throughout this journey," Harrington said.  "Last year before the walk Jayce raised $100 with her cousins Emma and Ethan, selling hot dogs and chips."

Harrington said that she has located a book titled "Mommy's Story" that is put out by the Multiple Sclerosis Association of America that helps children learn about their parents' MS. 

"Faith, hope and love is my answer," Harrington added.  

She will have a fundraiser for "Steppin' with Shae" at the Calvert City Dairy Queen from 5-8 p.m. Sept. 3.

Contact Andrea Moore, a Sun staff writer, at 270-575-8684.

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