Melanie Rowen was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in her late twenties. She remembers the first symptoms, such as bad vision and physical numbness, and her unsuccessful attempts to diagnose herself. As an attorney, normal tasks like writing briefs and remembering what was said at meetings suddenly became much more difficult.
The cost to treat the disease is over $700 a month. Rowen describes in detail how she deals with these financial burdens while trying to forge a new identity for herself.
Click the audio player above to listen to the story. Melanie Rowen spoke with her friend Kristina Wertz at the StoryCorps booth in the Contemporary Jewish Museum of San Francisco.