In two weeks time, I have attended three events that have highlighted--exposed my disability--MS.
The first, “Walk MS,” put on by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society I was spirited, but unable to complete the six laps and barely finished one—I’m cynical, Spare me, please.
The second, the LeMoyne Chain of Parks Art Festival, where I love to go every year to find great art, I had to use Buella (you will be introduced at a later date) to my legs being too week for me to trust them to carry itself.
Oh, yes, to the event that has me in pain as I currently write this. In one months time, I was nominated to be the public relations chair of the Leon County Alumni Chapter of Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University—yas. Rallied a team of public relations students and event managed (rather walked/hobbled on Buella) our annual scholarship gala.
It continues to set in little by little with the sympathetic looks at Buella or me, the “you’re too to young to have that” (MS, as well as any disease, is nondiscriminatory, believe it). I am now disabled, and it’s beginning to set in that I am stuck with this disease for the rest of my life. March and April have been difficult walking days; a good week is if I make it to Thursday without spinal cord pain, numbness in my right foot and four to five hours of sleep a night. I have changed my diet to compensate for the vitamins and nutrients that I lack, I attempt to exercise more, now that I sometimes have limited mobility, I strive to sleep, but due to MS restlessness, that is now a luxury. I try it all because I have NO other option. Seeing my MS, let me clarify, situations that reaffirm my MS force me even further to hide my MS, not out of shame, but because of the difficulty I have adjusting to relapses and chronic pain myself. I do not want anyone in an unfortunate event of attempting to help me in an MS crisis-God forbid.
MS has altered my life, not stopped, slightly altered and every day is still an adjustment. “Be still,” “be calm,” “low stress,” those are not levels I can ever relish in (I am a PR girl at heart, we never sleep!!). Between thinking about walking everywhere I go (not to trip, to pick up my feet, not to bump into anyone) and being my daily cheerleader, attempting to attend and adventure are taxing ideas, but I am glad I forced myself to get outside of my box and I enjoyed conversation, laughs, “tea,”all at each event that made the pain worth it.