The following was written by Sharlene, one of our patients who took the trip to Costa Rica for CCSVI Liberation in August of 2010

With December the 8th being my real birthday and Aug the 3rd not only being the day I married my best friend but also my “NEW” birthday. For many of you who don’t understand what my “NEW” birthday means, is the day I received the Liberation Treatment in Costa Rica.

I have given you the past, the present till before my treatment and now I will be giving you all the last part of the present and the future.

The day came where our luggage was packed and we were on our way to Toronto, then Costa Rica. The emotions that I felt that day were so overwhelming that I had to stop answering my phone. Leaving my family, friends and of course my fur babies was very hard. The feelings of did I make the right decision? Should I wait? Were all gone when we got on that plane. There was a point when we landed in Toronto and I checked my messages and my friend sent me a text saying “it was so sad when she took my dogs out that they ran to the gate and sat there and cried for myself and Brad”. That point I wanted to turn around and come home. Of course Brad said No way.

We landed in Costa Rica after a 5 hour flight and with butterflies in my stomach. I have never left North America and now here I am in Costa Rica. We got our luggage and were greeted by amazing people from Tropical Expeditions. Jose…. There he was with this big hug (Keep in mind, I have never met this man before) and a fruit basket. I thought to myself how amazing. The ride to the hotel was long and at times scary cause Jose drives fast. We arrived there safe. We were greeted by amazing staff at the Hotel Bougainvillea and welcomed with open arms.

The hotel where we stayed for treatment at CCSVI Costa RicaWe got settled in our room and the door started to knock and knock for the next hour. First José to fill us in on what was going to happen. Then Claudio (I must say at first I was scared of him), my physiotherapist. He did an assessment of me for physio. Then Enrique my neurologist for an assessment. Then Oscar to introduce himself to us. Oscar works for Passport Medical. I was so overwhelmed. So many names. The only way I could figure out who was who. Was to make up names for them. Jose was Jose “Querevio” Tequila. Oscar was Oscar “De la Renta”.

We settled in and decided to go have lunch. I know this may sound very strange to most of you that know me…. But I was very, very quiet and shy at first. Yah, yah I know. Me shy? Me quiet? That is a laugh. But true.

We went to the lounge were it was quiet and not allot of people.  As we were waiting for our lunch this lovely couple of people came and sat at the next table. Diane and her mother Rosemary. Getting up the nerve I leaned over and said to them “are you here for the MS treatment too?” Yes they replied. All the way from Courtenay, BC they traveled for that little bit of hope that all of us MS’ers were looking for. That hope for a better tomorrow.

All of a sudden in comes Karla, a mother from Prince George, BC a mother of a beautiful son and wife again looking for a better tomorrow. She introduces herself and welcomes us there. Karla came with her mom and dad, Jack and Cathy.

We all met later on in the lobby of the hotel. That place would become our meeting room. It was then we met Donna and her husband Earl from Edmonton. All of a sudden we became this family. No questions asked, we were a family.

Wow I thought, how amazing it was to meet such strong and amazing women. All suffering with MS.

We knew our family was going to get bigger. But how big was beyond any of our expectations. Charmaine and her husband Daryl from Winnipeg were next to arrive. We all greeted them with open arms, and welcomed them to “our Family”. It was amazing all these complete strangers in a matter of minutes became forever friends. Forever connected by the bond of wanting that better tomorrow.

As we all settled in with our pre physio and getting ready for our next steps. Then the amazing entrance of who I am honoured to called my “Little Sister Lilly”. She is 24 with MS. Trying to get her life back and took the spot of my dear friend Rob who was to come with us to Costa Rica, but fell 4 days before we left and broke his hip.

Gabby and Claudio - therapists at CCSVI Costa Rica

Gabby and Claudio - Our Therapists

Every morning we all went to our meeting room (the lobby) and had our blood pressure checked by our nurse Katia. She would follow us pre and post treatment. Then off for breakfast and then Physio. I know I said I was scared of Claudio, but after my first session with him and my physio partner Karla. It became clear that he was a pussy cat. Claudio and Gabby were our Physio Therapists. They are amazing and I saw them do amazing things with patients.

Well the day arrived when Karla and Donna were heading to the hospital for their treatment. We all gathered outside to send them off. It was the day that the wave was created. Our dear friend Diane took off her bandana and started to wave good bye. Well that is now known as the Diane wave. None of us had a bandana, so out came the Kleenex. With tears in our eyes, we knew that they were going be ok. The day seemed to drag on and on and on as we waited for news. Poor Oscar and José between all of us there bugging them for news we got it. Karla and Donna were fine, just very tired. I believe that we all shed a tear of joy…… Well next was myself and Lilly.