Meghan "Meg" Bayer is the founder, president, CEO, author, advocate, and so much more behind Meg's Miracles. You may question her abilities to run a non-profit organzation, but she has been tested time and time again throughout her young life.
On August 24, 2012, a mere 12 days after her 16th birthday, Meg had a catastrophic autoimmune reaction to the amorphous aluminum hydroxyphosphate sulfate (AAHS; a substance that is know to be a neurotoxin) in the original quadrivalent, Gardasil HPV vaccine.
The effects of the vaccine continue to ravage Meg's body daily, but she is determined to keep moving forward. She is a 3rd degree black belt in the American Taekwondo Association, 9-time World Champion, continues training for her 4th degree black belt and that elusive 10th World title! See the "Taekwondo" tab for more information!
She graduated from Our Lady of the Sacred Heart High School in the Class of 2014 with highest honors. She continued on to the University of Pittsburgh, where she was a vocal advocate for those with disabilities, graduating Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelors of Arts in Communication Rhetoric; Health Sciences Concentration and a minor in the Administration of Justice. Currently, she attends Winthrop University in Rock Hill, South Carolina, where she is pursuing her Master of Social Work (MSW). She is on track to graduate in the Spring of 2024, with aspirations of eaning her PhD and advocating for rare and complex patients on Capitol Hill.
Meg's Miracles arose from desperation as she laid in an ICU bed in December 2020 in the midst of an incredible, once-in-a-century pandemic. She recalls laying in that bed desperate for relief from having her left knee twisted like a pretzel behind my back (her foot often touching her scapula/shoulder), both of her ankles dislocated by spasms and digging into the bed until numerous pressure ulcers formed, a partially dislocated left hip added to her pain, her back and abdomen spasmed so hard at the same time she feared something would tear, and her right knee was fighting the metal, surgical knee brace to go behind her back as well until it broke the hinge! Her chest was tight as she fought for every breath; even on the high flow oxygen blowing through her nose while she passed out from pain from time to time. Her face spasms and contorted while her jaw locked up. Even her tongue twisted up making talking impossible.
She desperately needed rituximab infusions, but those would take at least 6 weeks and she was maxed out on massive doses of benzodiazepines and other muscle relaxers that would stop a 300 pound man from breathing never phased her. She cried out to God for help and He heard every prayer! Blessings abounded then, as they do now! She is currently working on her first book about her struggles as a young woman coming of age, a Christian, and a relentless advocate for the Power of Christ through illness.
She was maxed out on a Precedex drip, but the pain was just too far ahead. She spasmed non-stop for 3 days violently and her left leg has remained in contracture since then. Full sensation has not returned to her legs and doctors are not sure how long or if the sensation will come back completely since she was twisted up for so long. It was not her first spasm and she would be a fool to think it will be her last, but she always hope for the day her legs will stop spasming 24/7/365. Unlike a lot of SPS patients, she does not stop spasming while asleep or even when placed on a ventilator.
She knows that God has called her to live an extraordinary life to glorify His Kingdom, as His hands and feet and she hopes to can do that by helping to stop this devastating disease for myself and others. One day, newly diagnosed people won't be told this disease is "progressive and incurable". It will be more treatable and curable if we all do our parts to help out!
While my nickname is a part of the organization name, I recognize that this is all about God. Not me. Him. As a Christian, I believe I am called to live a life of faith, joy, and trust in Him. If I do that, pray, and study His Word daily, one day this won't another one of those chronic conditions with little to no hope of a cure. God willing, in my lifetime, we will find a cure. In that way, we can all do our part as God's Children to share experiences, raise awareness, and fundraise for the Johns Hopkins Stiff Person Syndrome Center, the only outpatient treatment center for SPS in the world. As one of my favorite bands Casting Crowns says, "I don't care if they remember me. Only Jesus."
Pediatric onset SPS rocked my world at the end of August 2012. Her immune system has managed to "slowly destroy" my body at any time. Most recently, Meg was diagnosed as a Type 1 diabetic (the autoimmune form of the disease). I wear a Dexcom G6 CGM (continuous glucose monitor) to tell me what my blood sugar is 24/7. When I go high (hyperglycemia) or low (hypoglycemia), it lets my receiver or phone know to check my blood sugar. It is especially helpful in keeping me safe and healthy from potential complications. She is insulin-dependent as of mid-2021.
As of December 22, 2021, there is renewed hope that Meg's body will be able to recover after a series of neurosurgeries. Her Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS), a genetic connective tissue disorder, has caused instability throughout her entire spine, leading to significant damage to the spinal cord. She now wears a neck brace many days. Doctors remain cautiously optimistic that she will regain her ability to walk again after she has the neurosurgeries. In the meantime, Meg is trusting that her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ is watching out for her and finds the joy in the pain!