A SWEET-toothed woman who suffers from multiple sclerosis (MS) is kissing goodbye to treats in aid of research.
Harveel Heer was diagnosed with the condition three years ago after experiencing a tingling sensation in the bottom of her leg. She thought nothing of it but it soon started to affect her walking.
She went for a scan which revealed inflammation in her spine, but it took months of tests to confirm the disease.
Harveel, who hails from Leamington, had just celebrated her 32nd birthday and been given a promotion. She said the diagnosis made her concerned about her future.
The now 34 year-old told the Observer: “It felt like my world was over. Up until this point, MS had never affected my family so I didn’t know much about it. All I knew was that it resulted in disability and possibly a wheelchair.
“I was desperate to speak to people like me, of my age and background, to find out whether I had a future. Then a conversation with my GP put everything in perspective. I realised that while MS is unpredictable, it’s also manageable. I decided then that I was going to make the most out of everything in life. I want a future and a family, and I wasn’t going to let these two letters hold me down.”
Harveel is is now mostly symptom free and says thanks to treatment along with support from family and her employer she has managed to continue working as an advertising account manager. She has even recently started going to sessions with a personal trainer.
And now her health is on the up she decided to help charity the MS Society raise money for research by giving up her favourite luxury – chocolate, cakes and biscuits.
She said: “It’s the circle around you that keeps you from falling and my amazing friends, family and work colleagues give me strength every day.
“I know I’ve been lucky. People who were diagnosed ten years ago weren’t given the same treatment options and hope as we are now. MS research has come so far, and without it we wouldn’t have access to drugs that are likely to be life-changing for me and many others.
“Giving up chocolate has been the hardest, but not as hard as living with MS. Doing this challenge is my way of giving back to all the MS geniuses out there, from the researchers to the MS Society.”
Visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/heerwithms to donate.