Whenever it’s time for the annual NMO Patient Day sponsored by the Guthy Jackson Charitable Foundation, I like to reflect on Patient Days past. We’re always told in yoga class to be present, be in the moment, but sometimes a little reflection is good. It helps you see how much has been accomplished since, and it motivates you to keep moving forward.
I first met Erin and Jenna at the 2010 NMO Patient Day, and then NMO Diaries was born. The three of us gravitated towards each other because we were all around the same age and had come to NMO Patient Day with our husbands, and we knew each of them needed to share some caregiver bro humor at the end of a long day of NMO speak.
The six of us went to dinner at a nearby Italian restaurant, and my husband, John, ever the tech geek, joked that we should start a blog about the struggles of NMO. We kicked around some blog names, but even through the laughter, we knew we were on to something.
Now, more than four years later, we’ve welcomed Lelainia into the family, whom I haven’t had the fortune to meet in person. Lelainia and Jenna will be representing NMO Diaries at the 2015 NMO Patient Day next week on Wednesday, March 4th. I will sadly have just missed them by a day, as I’ll be in L.A. For work but leaving for another event in Michigan on the 3rd. And pregnant Erin will remain in Denver to get ready for Baby Miller.
The NMO family has grown vastly, thanks to the tireless work of the GJCF in bringing us all together. I have no doubt this year’s Patient Day will be filled with more relevant panel discussions and interesting seminars. And, of course, Patient Day will continue to instill a sense of belonging in all its attendees, fostering a community comprised of those who once were marginalized by this formerly orphaned disease.
I strongly encourage everyone living with NMO or affected by NMO to attend the NMO Patient Day, if not this year, then the next. In the meantime, you can watch/listen to my talk at the 2013 NMO Patient Day to get an idea of what this day is all about.