Multiple Sclerosis Is Part of a Patient's Identity

Mandy Crest Health Guide
  • Hi. I'm Mandy, a 48-year old woman, married to a wonderful man, living in small-town Virginia. Since January of 2004, it is part of my bio to also include that I...make that we...are living with the daily effects of multiple sclerosis.

    I cannot avoid including that fact when describing myself. I'd like to, because I want to say that MS is not me, it is not who I am. Yet, it is so much a part of my every day life that it cannot be ignored...and that's okay. Denial will hold you back. Acceptance is a beautiful thing. It allows one to move forward, to work at making it work, to take charge of life!

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    My MS is of the relapsing/remitting variety and fully lives up to that name. I hold a part-time office position, working four hours a day when the MS allows. I drive when I can and my husband, Jake, shuttles me back and forth when I can't. I pass intermittently between the world of the able-bodied and the world of the disabled, allowing me to see more than meets the eye.


    The internet has been a helpful source of information for Jake and I these past few years. With the world at my fingertips, I'll never feel completely out-of-the-loop. Information sharing via the internet and, specifically, blogging, has become my passion.

    Not much of a support group kind of gal, I never got into the spirit of our local MS support group. Can't really say why, but it just wasn't my cup of tea. I may have been wrong about that. In the past few months, I've become part of an on-line community of sorts. Starting my own MS-related blog pushed me out into the blogosphere and reading about the experiences of others. Often I've seen myself in someone else's life, surprised and elated that a certain quirk of MS was not “just me” afterall.

    I look forward to posting here at HealthCentral.com and look forward to being part of this community.

    Multiple sclerosis has the potential to destroy its victims and their families. With its on again, off again nature and ever-changing symptoms, the emotional toll can be a hefty one. From the high price of prescription drugs not yet available in generic form, to the management of a wide variety of symptoms, to obtaining and affording health insurance, to losing the ability to hold a full-time job, the financial reality of MS is sobering, to say the least.

     

     

    Those of us who have MS and those of us who care about someone who does, must support and encourage one another. We must share what we've learned and we must seek solutions to the problems we face. If we work together, we can lessen that emotional toll. There is strength in numbers.

Published On: December 06, 2007