At Andrea’s Beau
, we care about giving back to our community and supporting those who need it the most. Our company has partnered with the National Capital Chapter of the MS Society
to help people in the DC area that have been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Our founder, Andrea Chafetz, has a personal connection to this cause because her close friend, Kathy Wenger, has been diagnosed with MS. Learn more about Kathy’s story below.
Can you tell us about your personal story surrounding MS?
I was misdiagnosed in 2002 when I first had symptoms of my right foot dragging when I walked and numbness over most of my body this lasted for about three months before I saw a doctor. Four years later I had similar symptoms only worse, after an MRI I was diagnosed definitively with MS. I have been giving myself a daily shot of Copaxone for eight and half years since that diagnosis. Unfortunately, I have most all the poor side affects from the shot; however, I want to be able to keep walking and the shots help prevent relapses. I now take the new Copaxone medicine shot given three times a week. The lesions on my brain and spine have increased since I was first diagnosed which is to be expected with MS. I have not had a major relapse only minor issues like my balance is challenged and my fingers become numb often now.
What do you hope the MS Society can accomplish to help people with MS?
I hope the MS Society can raise funds to do both research to find a cure and support local educational programs for people with MS and their caregivers.
What can people do locally to help support this cause?
People can donate either their time to help with implementing the local MS walks or bike rides and if possible they could donate funds for research or do both!
What inspires and motivates you?
Gathering together with friends and loved ones and being in nature especially if it is by the water or in the mountains.
Any life advice for young women and girls?
The following are all sayings and expressions that I think ring true:
A. Do well by doing good.
B. ”People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did; but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
C. Five simple rules to be happy:
1. Free your heart from hatred.
2. Free your mind from worries.
3. Live simply.
4. Give more.
5. Expect less.