I Did It Once, I Can Do It Again
Eventually I got over the initial shock of what it means to be an MSer. As a survivor of abuse, I became determined to not let anything, not even this disease, take me down.
The problem was, no matter how willing I was to fight, the exercises that led to success in overcoming my abusive past did not work in my fighting against MS. I was getting nowhere.
I decided to stop the madness. I let go of any and all expectations. I became silent, retreating from the world a bit. I did this to find any kind of new perspective to help me out of this very deep and confusing rut.
I began to seek that intuitive pang that led me to London years back. I put myself in a vulnerable place and released all expectations, seeking what some might call a miracle or answer to prayer.
The answer became clear over the next few weeks.
I’d never again find happiness, fighting against something that I would always have. I accepted, going against my rather egotistical and rational self, that MS was not the problem.
Starting Over for the Second Time
So what was the issue? What was blocking me from a happy life?
The answer was a simple one: I needed to begin shedding the patterns of my pre-MS life that were too difficult or that no longer served, in order to break through to the life I could have. I began to think about the big and small things I did or expected of myself each day that no longer worked in the scope of life with MS.
I desperately wanted to find purpose and meaning for the life I was living. My mind and days were becoming more and more cluttered as MS piled on more responsibility and made my routines more and more difficult.
Here is where I staked my claim. It was time to do inventory. It was time to move into the foreign land known as life with MS.
I did not need throw out my entire mode of being — far from it. What I did need to do was take a gently paced and thorough look around and within. I needed to plan for this life with MS starting today and then looking forward.
Back to Basics
My job now was to embrace life change. I needed to write a new script for myself and find a way to look forward to each day ahead.
I had fallen out of phase with the part of me I had come to trust and follow when I felt lost or unsure so many years ago. I’d disconnected from the spirit and sense of right I’d worked so hard to reclaim.
Surely, if I had found my footing before, I could reconnect to it again. In order to do this, I’d need to be brutally honest with where I was at.
I decided to begin by accounting for things I wanted to keep and things I could let go of.
I listed the things in life I wanted. I went through my internal toolbox, considering what I could do, what I needed help with, and what things I could no longer do or could do without.
My goal was to get in touch with the hidden layer of me waiting to grow and express itself throughout life as an MSer. I knew in taking on this inventory, I would begin to open space and make room.
Another New Set of Tools
Finding purpose through strife and a seemingly dismal outlook can become a grand journey. In my next article I shall pick up on where this leaves off. I shall write about the series of steps I took to get through a place of reflection and into a life of purposeful and satisfying readjustment.
I Am Who I Am With or Without MS — and So Are You
We all have our ways to cope with MS. Many of us thrive with it. We all, from time to time, slip into periods of imbalance and frustration.
Through it all, I know we can live lives with perhaps an even deeper meaning and more purpose than ever before. I have found some keys to coping with MS I look forward to continuing to share.
I am an MSer and I am at peace with that. This is not to say I don’t shake the rafters from time to time, but that is yet another story.