It’s that time of year again: The time when lists of people’s proud accomplishments scroll past on your social media feed. I don’t mind it. This year, in fact, I considered joining in to mention my book deal, which still feels surreal all these months later.
But every time I thought about posting, I remembered this time last year when I was ending the year without reaching my writing goals – and with a disease that had recently progressed. I was adjusting to new multiple sclerosis medication, slammed with side effects and fatigue, and scared for the future...
If there were an award for the worst runner in the world, I would win it.
That’s what was going through my mind the other day as I huffed and puffed my way back to my house after a less-than-mediocre jog. I’ve never been a great runner—it’s never come naturally to me—and yet it’s gotten harder in recent months...
May I have enough energy this year—parents need so much energy to navigate the demands of the school year, without pesky MS fatigue slowing them down.
So, may my fatigue not keep me from my children’s school activities, sporting events and dance recitals. May the hot weather not keep me from game days, or track and field days. May my medical appointments not conflict with those activities or events...
There’s a certain freedom to turning 40 and realizing that, even now, I am a work in progress.
Sure, I wanted to be able to write one of those inspiring posts—you know, the ones that say look at me, I just turned 40 and I ran a marathon, or climbed a mountain, or bungee jumped off a cliff...
Starting treatment for multiple sclerosis can be scary and life-changing on many levels.
It’s not just the inconvenience of having to fit a new medication into your schedule. It’s also the fear of side effects—not to mention the fear that comes when you find out your disease is progressing.
Three games of volleyball a night is getting a lot tougher than it used to be. I’m not sure if it’s because of my age (40 is just around the corner) or my chronic illness—even five years into my diagnosis, it’s still tough to tell the difference sometimes.
The end of this year marks my fifth anniversary since being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. I try to think back on those early days and where I thought I’d be at this point. Of course, I’d hoped to be fitter, stronger, more confident in my knowledge of my disease...
I can still remember the very last time I called to schedule a blood donation. Donating blood was something I used to do regularly—it was a way I could give back.
But, this particular call was the first time I tried to donate after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. And that day, I learned a brand new phrase: “permanent deferral.” It’s an odd phrase, really, and full of a harsh finality...
I still check on my boys every night—I don’t think they will ever be too old for me to peek in while they sleep, marveling at these gifts I have been given.
They’re growing up so fast, and some nights I can’t help but worry. That the world won’t be kind to them. That life won’t treat them fairly. That I won’t always be there to protect them...
The story is always the same.
Mom goes away for the weekend—either for a getaway with friends, or maybe to attend a conference. The trip itself is great. Mom comes home and all is well. She is just fine, thanks. Even rejuvenated...
Even if the sun was shining and the day was warm, I’d cringe whenever I’d drive by the park with my sons. Because I knew my 6 year old would ask to stop.
And I knew I’d have to say no...