Faith Amid Funkiness When SPMS Brings the Blues
I am in a funk. It took a lot of mental volleying to admit this. I am preconditioned to synonymize feeling down with weakness. This is simply untrue. I am strong. But I am also having a difficult time managing my disease. Both can be true.
In my transparency, I hope others will be transparent, too.
While I know this moment is transient, it still hurts. The increase in fatigue and physiological pain tests every part of my being. I witness my body changing as a result of new and active lesions. My once strong voice is often hoarse or wavering as a result of weakness and spasticity. I have seen my dysarthria (more specifically dysphonia) become more pronounced in this past year.
I remind myself that I can still talk. I remind myself that I can still walk. Once again, gratitude courses through my veins. For this moment, I am OK.
Speaking of walking, Walk MS 2019 is in April. I have participated in every Walk MS since my diagnosis and have personally raised over $10,000 for the National MS Society. I am sad that I cannot walk the course this year. I force myself to focus on what I can do. I can fundraise and help those without the means to manage their disease. I must meet each roadblock with a detour. The road less traveled is intriguing, yet the road one creates is full of untapped possibilities.
I have worked hard to train my mind. Cognitive tools continue to guide me through difficult moments. Guided imagery affords me the ability to attract positivity. I use the same technique to successfully lower my blood pressure. This is just one of many tools in my expansive tool kit.
Yet I am human. I cry. I mourn. I do the pity pot thing. I allow the wave of sadness, fear, anger, or loss to crash. I feel it, metabolize it, then let it go.
Then, I dry my tears, find acceptance for the day, and shift my perspective. I pray and ask God for guidance. I reach out to family and friends who continue to teach and inspire. I dig deep into myself. I tap into what I know to be true. I awaken the part of my soul my sadness overshadows.
I awaken myself. I open my eyes and see the shadow as it passes by. I feel the warmth of the light as it filters through. I own that light as my own, and as I do, I am enveloped with hope. Hope is kryptonite to my funk. I envision laser beams of hope breaking up globs of funk. And I smile.
I am back and I am shining my light.
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