When I was told I had multiple sclerosis, I did what most people would have done and started researching to see what I was up against. The list of potential symptoms seemed almost endless, but I was still prepared to fight and overcome any obstacles caused by the disease. It recently occurred to me that while I was learning how to deal with the aches, pains, fatigue and focused on the many issues caused by MS, I didn’t piece together that these symptoms could cause losses I never imagined. Losses that little by little, make me feel like I can never be the same person I was before, like:
My love for listening to music, which stopped even before I was diagnosed. I don’t know why I didn’t think it was strange that I suddenly didn’t want the radio on in the car anymore, and slowly lost track of the music world to the point I don’t even recognize most of the songs or musicians that came around after 2006.
My love for reading. I used to read book after book and would get lost in the story. I haven’t been able to read a book in years both because it bothers my eyes and I have difficulty focusing on what I am reading.
Writing was another important part of my life, and I had always planned to write a book, but now it’s a struggle to find the right words and complete thoughts, so I have avoided it for the most part until starting this blog.
Although there are other losses, none caught me as off-guard as the loss of friends. There were several people in my life that I considered extremely close, and thought of them as lifelong friends. This past year or so the fatigue, noise sensitivity, optic neuritis and cognitive issues have prevented me from going to social functions or even talking on the phone or corresponding online at times. At some point while trying to battle everything MS has been throwing at me and going through the biggest struggle of my life, some of those I considered close enough to be family disappeared. Thankfully I do have a couple of amazing people in my life that have been understanding despite the fact that I am not currently able to be the person I was before.
As I move forward, instead of focusing on my losses, I will try and focus on the positive. There is always something positive if you look hard enough, like the fact that I was able to take the time and make an effort to write this.