Nikki Jamieson, 52, from Aylesbury, has been living with relapsing MS since 2015.
The married mum-of-one is now starring in an advertising campaign for the MS Society’s Stop MS Appeal, which launches to the public this week.
Nikki, whose mum also had MS and passed away in a care home aged 59, said: “When I was told I had MS it felt like my life had ended, and I think the reason was my mum.
"I just thought, that’s what’s in store for me. For years I’d just seen her gradually get worse and worse and worse. She used to be a painter and eventually she couldn’t even write her name.
“But MS is unpredictable and different for everyone – mum’s MS was all physical, whereas for me, my symptoms are mainly invisible.
"I don’t want MS to be the thing that rules my life. That’s why I wanted to get involved with the Stop MS Appeal. We need to raise £100 million over ten years to find treatments for everyone living with MS, so no one needs to worry about it getting worse.”
Nikki works full time as a Business Enablement Manager at The Royal Bank of Scotland. She spends her free time walking her dog and practising Pilates.
More than 100,000 people live with MS in the UK and a huge number don’t have treatment. This means that as their condition progresses there is nothing to stop them becoming more disabled. With the backing of expert scientists, the MS Society claims we can expect to see a range of treatments for everyone in late stage trials by as early as 2025.
Niki said: “We are so close to finding that critical answer to stopping MS. This will have a huge impact on not only the thousands of people who live with MS like me, but for their family and friends that are affected too."
Nikki features alongside three other people with MS in the MS Society film, which shows some of the daily challenges of life with the condition.
We see Nikki practising Pilates as other stars get ready in the morning or wait for an MRI.
They are all singing Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Don’t Stop’ – the Stop MS Appeal anthem, chosen because the lyrics reflect the community’s hope for the future of treatment, and the positive changes possible through the Appeal.
The film, which includes a voiceover from actor Dougray Scott (Mission Impossible: 2), will first air in a slot during Channel 4’s new primetime show the Dog House (Thursday 10 October, 8pm).
Nick Moberly, Chief Executive of the MS Society, said: “For the first time we believe stopping MS is possible.
"Research has got us to a critical point, and we can see a future where nobody needs to worry about MS getting worse.
"That means not living in fear you’ll be reliant on a wheelchair, or one day lose your independence.
“With our support, the worldwide research community is now coming together to help us achieve our goal of finding treatments for everyone. But we need to act now, and we need help. We are so incredibly grateful to Nikki and all the amazing people who have helped make this campaign possible, and together will help us raise vital awareness of MS.”
The Stop MS Appeal will enable new projects, fund critical infrastructure, and deliver a first-of-its-kind MS clinical trials platform, which together could finally address the major unmet need in MS treatment.
For information about MS or to donate visit mssociety.org.uk. To donate or for more information visit mssociety.org.uk/stop. Or text FUTURE6 to 70800 to donate £5.