I was diagnosed with EM four years ago. Several months after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on my knee, I noticed that my toes were red, warm and tingly. Neither the orthopedic doctor nor my regular doctor had any idea what was going on, so I was referred to a neurologist. He determined that I wasn’t suffering from any neurological problems, so the mystery remained. Eventually another doctor finally diagnosed EM, after some lengthy consultations. I laughed to myself at the time thinking that I managed to get something that I had never heard of, nor could pronounce or spell.
I worked at a large school district for almost 30 years, starting as a school secretary. I later became part of the purchasing team, finally becoming the District Purchasing Agent.
I am retired and live in an active senior community in San Jose, Calif., called “The Villages.” Although EM has impacted my life considerably, I mostly keep it to myself. People will ask me “Are your feet better?” and when I say, “No,” I often wonder if they believe me. I also get asked “Why are you wearing sandals playing golf?” or, “Aren’t your feet cold in those sandals?”
I believe that staying busy helps me to temporarily forget my EM problems, so I’m very involved with activities in my community—serving as an Emergency Preparedness Chief, doing the handbook for my golf group, creating tickets and programs on my computer for several other groups at The Villages, and singing with the Village Voices.
I am single, have three grown children and four grandchildren. I have been writing my memoir and have taken classes on memoir writing. Regarding EM, my vision is to help make more information and research available to everyone.