National Mobility Awareness Month Partners:

Dalisa Akers-Keepes

Rolla, MO

Entry Photo for Dalisa Akers-Keepes - Rolla, MO

I’m not really sure I even would qualify but going to try. I have a rare autoimmune disease called Myasthenia Gravis. It effects your muscles, speech, swallowing, breathing. There is no cure and not everyone is affected the same. Unfortunately it does not tell my brain all the time to walk, swallow or breath when I am in a full blown MG crisis. This disease has taken away so much of my independence & has left me basically home bound. I have a mobility van that is very old & does not ride the best & we keep putting money we don’t always have in it to be able to get me to my many doctor appointments which are a (4-) hour drive minimum for me. I take aggressive chemotherapy (5-days) in hospital every 6-weeks for the rest of my life to keep my body going. I would love to be able to just go get in my vehicle & drive myself to my appointments. I cannot leave my home to go out to eat or go to a shopping store like others do or go to a park or out for even just a ice cream… Don’t take it wrong way but I am still young and would like to stay active & this disease makes it very difficult many times. Many people have never even heard of this disease & I would love to be able to get out of my home & travel & make people aware of how this disease can effect ones life. I’m not really good at writing things like this but I feel I must try. People who are healthy have no idea what life is like when you have to depend on someone else all the time. I am 55 & my husband is 79. My husband is my caregiver but it is getting harder & harder on him & im worried soon there will be a day he can’t help me anymore & this is why a mobility van would be a vital part of my everyday survival. I would be able to drive to the doctors, grocery shop, etc…please if you will just put yourself in my position for just one moment & think about if you have no family, & you have to get somewhere & you cannot, what would you do? How would you feel? thank you