Thursday, January 29, 2009

Multiple Sclerosis hits the Osmonds Again

David just auditioned for American Idol. This could help raise awareness for Multiple Sclerosis
but let's wish him luck on the show and support him !

MS and the Osmonds: The Second Generation
Among his other achievements — like headlining in Branson with The Osmonds: The Second Generation and taking over for his uncle Donny in the U.S. tour of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat — David Osmond may have devised the most evocative descriptions ever of the pain associated with MS.
The 24/7 sensation in his legs, he says, feels like:
Being beaten with a baseball bat
Being crushed in an avalanche
The worst sunburn imaginable
Not that he’s complaining. When we talked in late May 2008, David, 28, was euphoric because he could walk, drive, sing and play guitar. About a year earlier, on the eve of his wedding, he could do nothing. Just as torturous as the physical disability was the fear of condemning his saintly fiancĂ©e Valerie to being more of a care partner than wife. (David got steroids so he could walk down the aisle; then it was back to the wheelchair.)
A recent MRI wasn’t pretty, and David knows better than most that functionality can be on-again, off-again: his father Alan was diagnosed more than 20 years ago and has been a stalwart supporter of the MS movement. David’s diagnosis was complicated by the presence of West Nile virus, but after years of symptoms and tests, not to mention his family history, he was ready to say it: he has MS.
So, as Osmonds do, he found a way to move forward with style: by becoming director of business development for a new fundraising outfit called uPlejSM (pronounced “you pledge”) that pairs his commitment to the National MS Society with the multiplying power of social networking. Here’s David explaining how it works.
One of David’s goals for the nonprofit sector is to prove the benefits of cooperation. “Having done a lot of galas and performances and worked with nonprofits before, I have seen this inevitable — and I hate to put it this way — contention and fighting for the donor pool,” he said. “The concept behind uPlej is breaking down the walls between charities to support each other.”
David is grateful that as he has learned more about MS, he has learned more about his father. And when he sees how many clinical trials are underway, he has reason to hope there will never be a third generation of Osmonds with MS.
“I know it’s going to be a bright future,” he said.
“People ask me all the time, ‘How you doing?’ And I sincerely mean this: It’s the best day of my life, because I’m still here, on this planet, still breathing.”

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