symptoms

Multiple Sclerosis and the Brain/Body Disconnect

Mandy Crest Health Guide May 27, 2008
  • There are a thousand and one long and complicated ways to describe multiple sclerosis, but I like to keep things simple. The individual parts are good, but the connection is bad. Signals just don't get through, causing all manner of trouble. My cell phone is like that, too. Sometimes I have the urge to drop it into the trash, but I don't. I will eventually replace it, but I can't replace this body.

    Because of the brain/body disconnect, I experience strange sensations. Sometimes I have absolutely no awareness of the whereabouts of my limbs. Weird as it is, those of us with MS eventually get used to it. It becomes just another part of life.


    I have another disconnect. It call it my mind/body disconnect, and it is an infinitely more complicated issue.

    See, my mind thinks it is 22. It really and truly believes this. Blissfully unaware of the 48 year-old body to which it is connected, my mind often takes on a life of its own. With little understanding of the ravages time and multiple sclerosis, it continues to dream big dreams. It envisions the future as an endless road of possibilities. It sees no obstacle or time limit. It does not know the meaning of the word, “impossible.”

    This body desperately wants to give up. It is tired. It would be so easy, and so satisfying, to lie in bed and rest the day away. At times it is exhausting, constantly fighting for the strength to make it through the day. “Oh, please, just give me a little break!” The mind will have none of that. It pushes, prods, pleads, and coaxes the body into action. My mind has a will of its own, and the makings of a hard-nosed drill sergeant to go with it. 1-2-3, 1-2-3, let's go! Move... Move... Move! You have things to accomplish!

    There are times when I have to pull in the reins a little bit. Afterall, I am NOT 22, and I DO have MS. Let's be reasonable here. But, for the most part, I let the mind take off on its flights of fancy, indulge in fantasy, and explore the possibilities which stretch before me.

    As long as my mind remains more powerful than my body, I am winning. The trick is not to let that balance tip. I can never allow this body the upper hand.

    It is this mind/body disconnect which compels me to move forward in pursuit of my goals. The mind wears rose-colored glasses; may it never change.