Andrew's Story - IMNDA

Andrew’s Story

May 20th, 2016

Join us as we mark MND Global Awareness Day on 21st June. To help us raise awareness, one of our clients Andrew Brennan has bravely told his story of living with Motor Neurone Disease and will be the face of our national campaign this year. Keep a listen out for Andrew’s radio advert on national radio from 7th – 14th June and an eye out for his poster on Dublin Bus!

We want to share with people the real life impact of MND.  The radio advert will convey the emotional and physical reality of receiving a diagnosis of MND. It tells the real life story of Andrew and his own personal experience of MND.

As well as being an awareness campaign this will also be a fundraising opportunity for the association and we will be asking people to organise the ‘Drink Tea for MND’ Campaigns in their local areas on or around the 21st June.

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Andrew Brennan is 33 years old. Two years ago, he and his wife renovated an old school house into their family home. Andrew helped rebuild the school house brick by brick. He was there every day with the builders down in the dirt. They were building a house for life.

At 9.15am on the 26th February last year, Andrew recieved the devastating news that he had MND. His youngest daughter was just 5 months old and the eldest was 19 months old.

Andrew and Yvonne are now building an extension to the house they so lovingly restored. They again are planning for the future, for the day quite soon when Andrew will no longer be able to go upstairs to go to the bathroom or to kiss his daughters goodnight. This is Andrew’s story:

The first few months after my diagnosis were a bit of a blur. I was lost, we all were. My attitude was that this can’t happen to me, they have it wrong, sure I’m fine, I’m young and fit, very fit in fact, I had quit smoking and could do a 100km cycle without so much as getting off the bike for a break.

But I wasn’t fine, my right hand and arm was getting thinner and weaker. I couldn’t do the most easy, straight forward tasks.

I’d lie in bed at night unable to sleep, all the muscles in my arms and legs were twitching and cramping involuntary, I’d look over at my wife and wonder what lies ahead for us.

Would I save my wife, my kids and my family a lot of grief if I refused to go through this, if I didn’t let them see me go through this, if I took a different path.

I’ll never fully accept this but one day I came to a point where I said to hell with this, I’m not going to let this get in the way of me enjoying my life, I’m going to grab this condition by the scruff of its neck and drag it into the future, I won’t live with it, it’ll live with me while I’ll enjoy the time I have left.

I have plenty of things that I want to do, my greatest achievement was marrying my beautiful wife Yvonne and having two wonderful daughters. We’ve restored a 200 year old house and I’d like to finish it and I want to spend time with my family and watch my girls grow up.

So for anyone who has this condition I’d like to say it’s never over and to anyone who hasn’t I’d ask them to enjoy every day as tomorrow it could all change.”

Two years ago Andrew lifted and laid the blocks for his house, now he can barely lift a cup of tea. Please help us spread the word about MND.Cavan Tea 17

We want to commend and thank Andrew and his family for agreeing to take part in our national awareness campaign in June to mark MND Global Day 21st June. It is not an easy undertaking to put yourself out there and open up your doors to let people in. Please keep an ear out on the radio in early June for more on Andrew’s Story. Let’s Drink Tea for MND and together we will beat Motor Neurone Disease!

For more information or to hold a tea day, visit our website

Thanks for your support!!

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