I have been a DYNA Youth Ambassador since 2005. When I first joined, I used to feel sad when I saw an announcement of a new Ambassador. It troubled me that other teenagers were facing what I had faced and had come to find others in the same boat. Over the years though I’ve changed my outlook, and there is good reason for this.
Back when I had the first symptoms of my dysautonomia, I was fourteen. I spent many years bouncing from pillar to post without a real diagnosis. There was no idea as to when, or even if I would ever get better. I felt isolated from my peers and in many ways it was a lonely time. It wasn’t until I was attending university that we found a real answer to what I had been experiencing all these years. That was also when I found DYNA.
Twelve years on from my first symptoms and I am leading a normal life. I am married, earned my degree, and have a beautiful baby daughter. What’s more, I am healthy. I also have met dozens, if not hundreds of other dysautonomia patients who have improved their lot with the help and support of DYNA friends. Often when new Ambassadors arrive, they have had a much quicker diagnostic process, which is often due to the awareness efforts of the patients who came before them. Those who were set apart from the school friends they had before they were sick, have found companions who truly understand and will be friends for life. Those who were becoming bitter have been convinced to be better. There is no room for wallowing around here, and there is constant accountability and encouragement to take whatever positive steps you can to be in the best shape for recovery.
So you see, there is no reason for me to be sad anymore, because when I see the names of new Ambassadors appearing, I know they are in the very best place, and their journey towards a happy and healthy future starts today.