I woke up this morning tired, not how you are supposed to feel after 9 hrs sleep, I guess that means I will be tired all day. I actually can’t remember the last time I woke up feeling really great and bouncing with energy. I remember that great feeling of a new day with expectations of things to be achieved and fun to be had. I don’t remember when that ended but I do know that is gone. I’m frequently being told not to hold on to the past as it is gone and that I should use my energy planning for the future. I know this sounds bad but I can only answer that by saying ‘what future’. Yes I have plans of getting a new job and things I would like to do my home once I have one, but that doesn’t fill me with the warmth of my memories.
There are for me just as there are for everyone, dark areas which some would rather not remember, yet now I also embrace them. When you are forced to change your world, constricted with no way of continuing what you had, you see everything in a different way. I could moan about not being able to dance, walk or run any longer, make myself feel bad about MS or I can let myself truly remember, remember all the good feelings and find a freedom that reality had taken away from me. I haven’t stopped living I just changed the way I do it. Physicality is so much part of our world that to lose it seems unthinkable.
I challenge you to spend just one weekend at home, were you can speak to on one other than your partner, you can do nothing but sit in front of your PC in the day and TV in the evenings. No you can’t do any housework, a blessing you may think, but think that into the future and the dust that just has to lie there. You can’t read a book as your eyes won’t let you, nor can you knit, sew or any other craft type project. Theses are all gone, as is anything you need to do standing for more than a few minutes. You will then get a glimpse of the easy side of having MS. Then when you wake on Monday morning, I bet you will be happy to go to work, happy to have another person to talk to, happy to be outside. The thing is in my world I don’t wake on Monday morning to anything different than I do any other day. I wake to a limited future with a rich past.
There is still a lot left for me to do and much I want to do, but I have to accept that mountaineering just isn’t going to happen. I thought I would never survive living this way, yet I have and I think the reason why I manage is quite simple. I balance what I have with the richness of what was.
I’m not anything or anyone special. I’m not different or stronger than you, the only difference between us is I have Multiple Sclerosis, that’s all.