Are there any up sides to be found in multiple sclerosis?
A silver lining is the hopeful side of a situation that might seem gloomy on the surface. A metaphor for optimism, this accurately describes who I am. This is not to say that I don’t experience the inevitable darkness that accompanies those trying days living with progressive multiple sclerosis, I just try not to focus on them.
With my diagnosis of relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis seven years ago, I had no idea what lie ahead. From Copaxone to Tysabri and now Rituxan, it has been almost surreal to witness the progression of this disease as well as the undeniable changes to me both physically and emotionally. Now with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis, I’ve come to accept this disease and the uncertainty it brings. How? As cliché as it sounds, I live one day at a time. Managing the symptoms of an ever-morphing disease can only be done by living in this manner.
So, here I sit, preaching the merits of living in the moment while simultaneously dreading Monday’s chemotherapy treatment. Hey, I never said I was perfect. And this disease can get scary, especially when you see progression despite treatment. So what do we do? We live. We take joy where we can find it and we spread it like wildfire. I know it’s anything but easy, but I can’t let this disease define me — I won’t let it. It can take my legs along with some cognitive function but it sure as hell isn’t taking my soul.
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