Thursday, January 1, 2009

And we're off!

Multiple sclerosis is a disease with many gifts.

All of us who have it, we all know that it's a royal pain in the ... well, in my case, legs. It's a continually moving target. It's different every day. Sometimes every half day. Parts of our lives, abilities we once took for granted: things we no longer have, things we can no longer do. There are parts of our lives that are just over, and every day we may find that something else has simply... dropped away.

And yet, I maintain, it is a disease with many gifts. And there are things about my life now that are more full and beautiful than they were without MS, changes for which I am grateful and which I have to admit, I owe to MS.

And as one of my spiritual advisors said one day: I needed to get MS. Not "deserved to get"--needed to get. (That will probably take the rest of my life to really figure out, but even now I think... he may have been right.)

So, what is this blog about? Why are we here? So much material on the web is about fighting MS, struggling with MS, the battle against MS. And sure, I'll admit, I'd rather not have the spasticity, numbness, fatigue, and entertaining disfunctions of various bits of plumbing. But victory in a life lived with MS is not obtained by struggling, but by listening.

As one Olympic athlete put it, "Obey nature, and nature will obey you." In any relationship, both sides have to listen. Sometimes you need to listen to MS... and sometimes, MS needs to listen to you.

Welcome to the journey. To paraphrase the Grateful Dead: What a long, strange trip it is.

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