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.
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.