There Are Angels Among Us: I’m Grateful for the Helpers

There Are Angels Among Us: I’m Grateful for the Helpers

Jennifer Silver Linings

I like to keep my life as normal as possible. This can be difficult given the physical challenges multiple sclerosis and chronic pain pose. Nevertheless, I try.

Saturday was one of those days. I mistakenly assumed I could tackle Costco — the Goliath to my David. Hence, I must outsmart this mammoth rather than power through the challenge. Local knowledge is that they open their doors 15 minutes prior to regular business hours. You can bet I am there. I find the closest parking space and begin my shopping with a few others. A well-executed plan.

MS laughs at plans.

The best-laid plans are no match for MS. I have learned to navigate around the expected fatigue and general malaise, but the intensity of immediate, acute attacks leaves me lost.

I experience profound spells of disabling fatigue. The weightiness envelops me from head to toe. Within an hour of onset my body becomes leaden and my mind hazy. Cog fog intensifies as I check out and head for the exit. I move to ask the attendant for help but opt to forego because three parties are before me.

Sigh.

Discuss the latest research in the MS News Today forums!

Just as a tear begins to well, a middle-aged gentleman offers his help. I accept with gratitude. I watch as this perfect stranger helps a perfect stranger. Tears fall freely and I ask if I can give him a hug.

The tears fall like rain as I drive home. Mr. Rogers told us to look for the helpers. I smile and thank God for sending me His. There are angels among us. They are our helpers when we are tired, weak, and weary. Look for them and they will make themselves known. Ask for them and they will step up.

I think of my angel. I think of him and his random acts of kindness. Does he know he is an angel? Does he know my day is better because of him? Does he know?

I know.

“Pay it forward” comes to mind. I feel a beautiful call to oblige. I will look for angels but also be one. I will pay more attention to my environment. I will be one of the helpers. Only then can I perpetuate the beauty of my own experience. Only then will others experience what moved me to tears.

My disease will continue to affect my mind and body. I refuse to allow it to it to affect my heart. I refuse to allow it to affect my faith both in myself and the human condition. I will refuse blinders to avoid the sight of hurt. Instead, I will attempt to heal that hurt whenever possible.

I will be the helper.

***

Note: Multiple Sclerosis News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Multiple Sclerosis News Today or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to multiple sclerosis.

Jennifer Powell is a health writer and weekly columnist on Multiple Sclerosis. Jennifer imparts her hopeful optimism into real-life challenges facing the MS community. Prior to writing her column, Jennifer freelanced for several online periodicals including WebMD. When not writing, Jennifer enjoys volunteering with animal rescue, traveling and spending time with her Golden Retriever.
×
Jennifer Powell is a health writer and weekly columnist on Multiple Sclerosis. Jennifer imparts her hopeful optimism into real-life challenges facing the MS community. Prior to writing her column, Jennifer freelanced for several online periodicals including WebMD. When not writing, Jennifer enjoys volunteering with animal rescue, traveling and spending time with her Golden Retriever.

10 comments

  1. Lisa Marie Callahan says:

    Jennifer
    Thank you very much for sharing your personal struggles and for expressing them in such an eloquent way. I will be printing this as I think it is a story you;ve turned in to a beautiful work of art(poetry)
    Happy Valentines Day
    Lisa

  2. Danielle Stone says:

    What a Wonderful article. One of the best I have ever read. Thank you so much for sharing this experience from your heart. And for those of us who know what debilitating and life changing MS fatigue feels like, gives us hope about our fellow mankind. Take good care of you!

  3. GARY SHAMBLEN says:

    0h yes, there are angels. When I get tired and my legs start giving at the knees I must sit down. Preferably, not on the floor. I recently, after a long day at the city, had that non-preferred ending. First here was my Dr.appointment(1 hr. away), then lunch with my wife, shopping, then to the DMV to renew my driver’s license. After arriving at the DMV I began the walk to reg.& info., then walk to the farthest corner and wait at payment window, after paying I had to walk back to START & wait at the photo desk. Following completion of the first two legs of this endurance test and my photo turn finally came I could feel my legs getting very tired. As I was signing my name for the um-teenth time I noticed that old familiar, uh-oh it’s over feeling. I saw a chair behind me. If only I could get to that chair. My feet felt stuck to the floor. As I reached, twisted, and turned to get that chair I went beyond the “point of no return”. Only thing left to do(as in many times before) is try to sit on down gracefully(LOL) and lie back on the floor and rest a bit. Next, I heard the Angels coming in for the rescue. After my photo setting(no pun intended of course), as we returned to the car I overheard one of the Angels ask my wife “now he’s not driving, is he?” So, what do you think?

  4. Dorothy Kane says:

    I think most strangers out there are angels. It’s really rare that someone won’t offer to help me out there in the world, whether it’s just opening a door or helping me put my scooter together. It always touches me when people go out of their way to offer a helping hand.

  5. Sara Everett says:

    You have a beautiful attitude and I’m sure you are a blessing to all you come in contact with just as this gentleman is.

  6. madeline newton says:

    I CAN RELATE TO THE TIME IN COSTCO FOR I HAVE FALLEN TRYING TO DO EVERYTHING MYSELF AND DID FALL TRYING AND HAD PEOPLE STOP TO OFFER HELP TO GET UP BUT LUCKY FOR ME I WAS ABLE TO GET UP …IT IS TOO WARM FOR ME TO BE IN COSTCO FOR VERY LONG …I LOVE THE STORE BUT JUST TO MUCH AND OF COURSE IT IS HARD TO LEAVE BEFORE I AM DONE SO YES THERE ARE LOTS OF ANGEL AND YES I AM ONE OF THEM FOR IF I SEE SOMEONE THAT LOOKS LIKE THEY NEED HELP I TOO OFFER SOME HELP MAYBE TO FIND SOMETHING OR HELP UNLOADING THEIR CART INTO THEIR CAR WHICH I KNOW IS SCARY FOR THEM FOR TOO MANY BAD PEOPLE OUT THERE SO I TELL THEM HOW I HAVE NEEDED HELP MYSELF AT TIMES AND SOMETIMES THAT HELPS OTHER TIMES THEY JUST LOOK AT ME LIKE SURE….SO YES THERE IS ANGELS OUT THERE ….TRY TO BE ONE FOR YOU NEVER KNOW WHEN YOU MAY NEED ONE ….LOADS OF LOVE TO ALL OF YOU …

  7. Sue Atkinson says:

    Hi Jennifer,
    I was feeling a bit sorry for myself … then I read your post.

    Yesterday afternoon I was gardening, mind and top body at the willing, when fatigue struck, legs gave up and I had an amazing fall which put my teeth through my lip, bizarrely in two places (teeth fine) and my cheekbone damaged and badly grazed…hospital visit! 5hrs later I learned that there was no fracture just badly bruised. Thank goodness, I have suffered many falls over the last 10 years which thankfully haven’t resulted a broken bone. My bones must be very strong!

    Like you I try to be very independent but there are times when we need those able bodied Angels, who I have to say think nothing of helping.

    Keep well and keep the Angels on guard.

    Sue Atkinson

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This