Embracing Winter, No Matter What
With tens of thousands of Embr Wave bracelets now out in the world, we wanted to highlight the ways that Thermal Wellness can be embraced by sharing the stories of our most passionate Wavers. This is Kevin's story.
Kevin is a true-blooded Midwesterner.
Born and raised in Michigan, he spent 25 years as a diemaker for Ford, working up to 80 hours a week building tools for the massive motor company. The long hours were no issue for him—Kevin loved his job, and found meaning in the work that he did, always positive and active.
About a decade ago, Kevin was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS), a chronic illness of the central nervous system.
Symptoms of MS are caused by the breakdown of the myelin sheath, a covering that surrounds and protects your nerves, making it harder for the brain and body to communicate.
Though the symptoms and their severity vary from person to person, the disease can cause muscle weakness, vision loss, difficulty swallowing or speaking, and, for people like Kevin, an increased sensitivity to temperature.
Too Cold For Comfort
The MS caused him to go from one temperature extreme to another, making it harder to feel comfortable in his day-to-day routine. One moment he would feel overwhelmingly hot, and after stepping outside, suddenly become distressingly cold.
The temperature issues were the biggest problem in the winter, though, as Kevin’s Michigan town could get down to 30 degrees below freezing.
Having lived in the state his entire life, Kevin was no stranger to the cold, and had never been fazed by what a lot of people might consider weather that’s best spent indoors.
Even with these added difficulties, Kevin was not going to let the season get the best of him, especially once work no longer became an option for him due to his health.
“I’m not the kind of person who would ever just sit around inside all day.”
Though unable to ski and skate like he used to, Kevin continued to enjoy winter activities with his wife and family, from attending ice shows and snowmobile races, to even simply just getting out of the house.
“Even if it’s just going out to the grocery store,” Kevin explained, “that’s something that makes you feel less cooped up.”
Despite Kevin’s refusal to let his illness get in the way of doing the things he wanted to, the discomfort that he was experiencing began sapping some of the joy of the things he loved.
He would go out, having to constantly be worried about feeling too cold instead of just enjoying whatever he was up to.
For the lifelong Midwesterner, this was becoming a huge cold-weather issue.
Put to the Test
Kevin first learned about the Embr Wave through Facebook, during the 2017 Kickstarter campaign. He saw what the Wave was supposed to do, and hoped it could help bring some joy back for him in the winter.
Once the product was released, he decided to try it, though with quite a bit of skepticism.
“I was ready to return it if it didn’t do what it said it would,” said Kevin.
So he decided to put it to the test at Greenfield Village, an outdoor American history museum in Michigan that organizes Holiday Nights in celebration of Christmas time.
Amidst the carolers, bonfires, sleigh rides, and ice-skating, Kevin brought his Embr Wave to see if he could enjoy the festivities with a little more comfort.
And to his surprise, it did.
Kevin was able to enjoy the evening with his family without having to worry so much about the temperature. “With the right layers on and my Wave, I was able to feel so much more comfortable.”
Always Moving Forward
He continued to wear it through that winter and the next, learning more and more about how to best make it work with his body.
“It’s easy to use and just tuck under my sleeve,” Kevin said, “and being able to control it on my phone makes everything so simple.”
Now, when dressed properly, Kevin is able to do the things he wants with the confidence that the cold won’t get in the way.
Though he’s dealing with the symptoms of MS, Kevin is living an active, full life in his home and community.
After a few years of struggling to figure out how to spend his time without being able to go to work, he began using his years of experience as a toolmaker to make craft dollhouses for his granddaughters.
Kevin acknowledges that he’s “one of the lucky ones”, and that not everyone with MS is able to do all that he is and live as comfortably as he does. He remains positive, upbeat, and tough - like he’s always been.
Want to hear from more people using the Wave to manage temperature issues related to MS? Check out our reviews page and type "MS" in the search bar.