Interview Nonna: Lentemarathon for hope of curing MS

Nonna was diagnosed with MS 14 years ago. Through the Amstelveen Lentemarathon, she wants to raise money for an alternative treatment method that could completely change her life and the lives of those close to her.
Fourteen years ago, a new phase in life began for Nonna, one she never wanted to face. After having an MRI scan, she was diagnosed with MS, which completely changed her life. Nonna has hope of being cured through an alternative treatment method, but this involves a large amount of money. On Sunday 19 March 2023, Nonna will run the 10km at the Lentemarathon Amstelveen, aiming to finish the distance in her extraordinary situation. We spoke to her about her story up to this point and how her preparation is going.

Can you tell us a bit about the history of your MS?

It started in 2008 when I got a somewhat numb feeling in my cheeks. I went to the GP for that, but he told me it was probably nothing. So, I returned home thinking it was all okay.

Some time later, that feeling spread to my right leg and then I knew something was wrong. I had an MRI scan done and that’s when the diagnosis of MS came out.

I then tried all kinds of medication, with varying effects, but generally the symptoms were suppressed.

At the moment, I can still do a lot of things, but there’s also a lot of things I can’t do. And I want that to be over. There is a treatment option, but that treatment is currently only available in Mexico. Of course, that means the entire thing will cost me a huge amount of money. And that is what I have now set up this campaign for.

How did you come up with the idea of making the Lentemarathon your charity run?

I got the idea from a fellow patient. They gave me the idea of collecting the funding through a sponsored run, to which I was only too happy to say “yes”. So that’s how it happened. I have now set up a page where people can support me and am training as hard as I can for the Lentemarathon.

What distance do you want to run and how is the preparation going?

I want to run the 10 kilometers and I am already working towards that. This week, I ran 9 kilometers, which was a huge victory for myself and now makes me even more confident that I will succeed. But in my situation, it always remains a bit of a gamble that things will work out on the day. At the moment, I aim to train three times a week, but in practice it more often comes down to once, twice at most, because I can’t manage more.

Where can people go to support you?

Through my GoFundMe page, people can donate towards my goal. If I reach my target amount, I can fund my treatment and put an end to this 14-year-long disease that has had such an impact on myself, my little daughter, my fiancé and the rest of those around me.