My Story. My Strength. My MS.

Everyone’s story and experience of MS is different. We want to bring you real stories from real people living with MS in New Zealand. To read their stories in full click on the names below.



Nicole Jupp – Regional Member

“When diagnosed, I was informed of a support group that I could attend at my local MS society, MS Taranaki. My initial thoughts on support groups were ‘people just sitting around feeling sorry for themselves,’ and this was something I didn’t want. Eventually, curiosity got the better of me and I reached out. Those original speculations crumbled after meeting Moria; the local MS Field Worker. This brought a ray of sun through the rain cloud above my head that was a constant reminder and an ever-threatening possibility of a potential relapse. Not only did it give me a sense of security and community, but it opened a door of potentially being able to play a part in helping an amazing cause for people just like you, who may be hiding from their diagnosis, feeling alone or continuously trying to explain a misunderstood disease.”



Cath Barr – Desktop Publisher

“What do you do when someone blows your mind away by telling you that you have an incurable disease that will change your life forever? That you may be unable to walk in a year or hold an object in your hand; you may get incontinence; you may lose your sight and so on and so forth? All these horrible thoughts go through your head. And of course, the big one. Is it real? Why me? What can be done about it?.”



Lieza Vanden Broeke – Scientist

“Some days I may not feel like going to the gym, and all I want to do is eat pizza, watch a movie, and sleep. But then I remember that my body is sensitive. What I put in, I get out. If I want a body that can move and think clearly, I need to move it and I need to feed it well.

I may have MS, but MS will never have me.”



Dr Elza Cloete  – Neonatologist

“The ability to continue to work and remain active in the community are some of the cornerstones of living a positive life with MS. My hope is that people with MS will be supported to do exactly that.”





Rick Dodson – Multiple World Champion Sailor

“I remain positive I think it’s important to focus on the future always have a goal in mind and just chip away at it. I have not let the illness get the better of me and have spent the last few years improving my speech and balance. Just because I have MS it does not take away any of my comprehensive knowledge. You can still do the things you love you just have to sometimes do them differently.”



Nan Stewardson – Adventure Racer

“It was mind over matter, when I had relapses I gave myself 3 days to be sad then on day 4 I gave myself a talking to and got back up used my crutches and got on with my day! Nothing is impossible. That is what I tell myself often Nothing is impossible.”



Do you have a story you would like to share? How has the work we have done made a positive impact on your life? Do you have any tips for living a happy, healthy life with MS?

If you would like to contribute YOUR STORY please contact MSNZ via our Contact Us page.


The stories, words and viewpoints found in My Story My Strength My MS are those of the Contributors. Content on this website neither indicates nor reflects the views of MSNZ. All information on this page follows the MSNZ Disclaimer Policy.


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