MS Inspiration: For Mother’s with Multiple Sclerosis

Sometimes I think the greatest gift anyone with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) can receive is love; including mothers with MS.

I don’t have children, but if I did, I would want my child to be like James Leff.

A few weeks ago a colleague told me about a young man (James) who was planning to cycle across British Columbia to raise awareness about Multiple Sclerosis; his mother has it. After hearing about him I had to meet him. Caroline graciously arranged for the email exchange and James agreed to meet me for coffee.

We spent about one hour together, exchange information about our circumstance. Through our conversation I learned James (18) had recently moved from Ottawa to Victoria and is studying recreation and health at the University of Victoria. He has two older brothers, Jason (23) and Michael (20). Jason is soon to be married and living in Ottawa and Michael is studying Kinesiology at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.

James’ parents currently live in Ottawa and will soon make the journey across Canada to live with him in Victoria. He is hoping the cooler summer climate and milder winter climate will help his mom. She has had MS as far back as he can remember. When he was 3 or 4 he remembers her walking with a cane. Over the years the disease has progressed and she now uses a wheel chair. He remarked on the number of pills she has to take.

When I asked James if his and his brother’s areas of study had anything to do with his mom his reply was “perhaps, on a subconscious level”.

In a few weeks, after his mom has safely arrived in Victoria, James and his brother Michael will begin their bike ride from Victoria to Penticton, British Columbia. Along the way they hope to connect with people and talk about their family’s experience with MS and raise awareness about the disease. James will continue on from Penticton and hopes to ride into Banff, Alberta.

I asked James if he had contacted any agencies or the press in any of the communities he would be riding through. Surely he would want others to know about the incredible journey he was about to make. His reply was “No, I mostly just want to make my mother proud”.

In honour of James, his mom and their family – this year on mother’s day show your mother how much you appreciate her, tell her that you love her, and tell her you are as proud of her as she is of you.

If you are able to sponsor James click here!

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6 Comments on “MS Inspiration: For Mother’s with Multiple Sclerosis”

  1. sue says:

    What a wonderful Young Man, congratulations and good luck James !!

    • Diane Thompson says:

      What a beautiful story. Good luck James ( from a mother with ms). Thank you Susan for sharing your gift of story and your passion to reach out to everyone. Diane T.

  2. Stan fisher says:

    I too am very proud of James. He is a wonderful young man, with a quiet passion for family and friends. His desire to do this project for MS and his mother, my daughter, tells all of us how deep his feelings go. We are all fortunate to have him and his brothers in our family.
    The proud grandfather, Stan.

    • Zara & Milton Leff says:

      We are his grandparents and are very proud of James and his accomplishments as an athlete and a student. He has touched us with his sweet and loving ways and his desire, along with his brothers, to be the best at all they try. His father, our son, dotes on James and is encouraged by his deep appreciation of the trials and tribulations of MS life. It warms our hearts to see this wonderful family pulling together to make a comfortable life for all.

  3. James Leff says:

    Thanks Susan for the support my parents can’t wait to meet you, I have created my website with the MS Society so people can donate if they would like for the trip and I will post updates on this site: http://mssoc.convio.net/site/TR/BikeTour/BCandYukonDivision?px=1500570&pg=personal&fr_id=1167

  4. Susan Leff says:

    I hope you get properly recognized for this article and Jamie does too for his great ride

    I also hope to meet you
    Susan Leff


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