It is Rosh Hashanah today, the Jewish New Year. I am actually participating with my family and going to my brother in-laws family. I have to admit, I haven’t been doing the big Jewish family dinners lately. My brother in-law’s family have been opening their home to us for the past 15 years. They are wonderful people. I think, for me, part of what makes it slightly difficult is one of his cousins has multiple sclerosis as well. She is one of those people who have MS and you can’t really tell. Whereas I started going to these dinners walking, then with a rollator and now I’m in a wheelchair. Of course I know everyone has a different track with MS. No two people are alike. However she is thin and eats super healthy and I can’t help but compare myself with her on levels. I have always struggle with weight and I started exercising over 10 years after my diagnosis. Sometimes I think if I started eating better and exercising from day 1, would it have made a difference?
On the Jewish New Year you are supposed to throw away your sins for the year. This is then forgiven on Yom Kippur. Well I can list all my sins, but I wanted to do something different this year. I would like to list a few things I am proud of myself for.
- Never giving up. I am persistent, stubborn and motivated. I will never sit around and wait for MS to take over. I am always pushing myself to do things that are hard.
- Smiling. It is not easy to laugh and find humor when you are living with a chronic disease. I have learned that the pity party is easy to throw but certainly doesn’t help any situation. I find that smiling through a majority of the days makes most of the days more livable.
- Loving. I love more than I fear and more than I hate. I’ve learned to look at life with a different set of eyes over the last 5 years. I thank the teachings of A Course of Miracles, Marianne Williamson, Gabby Bernstein and my sister. I’ve let go of resentments that I’ve held onto for years and years. I’ve accepted my disease in different ways and understanding.
- Being Aware. I do my research. I follow up on new MS research and medications. I know about my condition and what is our there that may offer some hope. It’s very rare my doctor mentions something I haven’t heard about.
- Surviving. I deal with my disease every day 24/7. I don’t get any days off. Some days are very difficult and some days are slightly better but no day is good anymore. Yet each morning I wake up and I get myself ready to fight anything that comes my way.
- Positive attitude. I do my very best to be positive, be grateful for all the wonderful things in my live and remember even the worst day always passes.
I know that MS sucks for the majority of the people who it affects. I know after 23 years, as tough as it is, it could be worse. I may have taken longer to get myself on the right track but I got there. I got there and have been there ever since. For anyone doing well with MS, like my brother in-law’s cousin, good for you. For anyone struggling, find your strength, it is there. They don’t call us MS warriors for nothing.