Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Is This As Good As It's Going To Get?...

OK, here are the cold, hard facts...the reason I was relatively "quiet" yesterday on the blog is because I have been feeling very apprehensive and pensive about my current situation with my most recent relapse of Multiple Sclerosis. There. I've admitted it and said it out loud to an entire audience...I think I'm supposed to feel better now, but unfortunately I don't.

I have been waiting patiently for the "remitting" part of my Relapsing and Remitting MS diagnosis to kick in and it's just not happening quickly enough for me this time. I am now going into my 6th week of symptoms with this episode and I have grown impatient.

It's true, I have returned to work, but not without a major physical struggle on my part and it's wearing me down. It is taking all the energy I can muster up just to get there, let alone "be there" for the clients I see. My fatigue level remains fairly constant and my concentration seems poor. The pain in my shoulder/arm is hovering just below intolerable. And to make matters worse, I woke up yesterday morning with a "new" pain in my RIGHT shoulder, which feels like someone is twisting a vise on my neck and back muscles! I suppose my right side just couldn't leave matters alone and had to act up to get in the picture too...

Now please forgive me if I am beginning to sound just like that whiny MS patient we all know who never has a good day and can only focus on what's wrong in their life versus anything that might be good. That's not the point I'm trying to make here. Where I'm going with this is to that place none of like to talk about or be in...that place of limbo we all feel at some point in our disease process...that place where we begin to worry and say to ourselves, "Is this as good as it's going to get?"

Let's face it. We've all been there at one point or another during our diagnosis and it pains me to admit I am there now. For the past week, I have awakened each day fully aware little change has occurred in my body on the path of wellness and I've been quietly asking the Universe, "Is this as good as it's going to get?" The question has been nagging me in the back of my mind and occupying a great deal of my subconscious time. It has been occurring consciously as I have struggled to physically keep up with the demands of my days. But until today, I have not voiced it out loud, so here goes: IS THIS AS GOOD AS IT'S GOING TO GET?

Hmmm...I sat here at the computer for about ten minutes awaiting some Divine Intervention or perhaps a "Great Ah Ha" to wash over me. Nothing. Nada. No visions or magical insights. No angels or voices from heaven. Only me, my computer, and my unanswerable question. IS THIS AS GOOD AS IT'S GOING TO GET?

If the truth be known, I already KNOW there's no answer to my question right now. Only Grandmother Time will tell me the answer and she seems slower than a seven year itch at this very moment! I wish I could pick up a phone, dial her and say, "Yo Granny. Is this as good as it’s going to get?" I think I might only get a busy tone when I dialed, however. I'd have to get in line behind all the other 400,000 MSers in the USA who already have her on speed dial. Not to mention the other thousands of MSers around the world who are already waiting in line on the phone tree voice mail system.

So, I continue to wait without an answer or sign. And, I continue to worry and wonder what lies ahead. I also can't help but think about what my life may be like if I have to live with these current symptoms forever. And each time I have gone through this process, I grieve a little more and let go a little more. I know my recovery is out of my hands right now and there is little I can do physically to influence or change my current symptoms, short of more medications or other suggestions my neurologist may have. Some would choose prayer at this juncture, which I am not apposed to. Some would seek alternative treatments or medicines, which might help. Some would become overwhelmingly depressed and stop functioning.

For me, I have found talking about my concerns and voicing my fears out loud seems to lessen the power the "big monster" in the living room has on me. Being honest about how I am feeling opens the door for me to FEEL how I'm feeling and not stuff unwanted negativity inside me. Speaking my truth empowers me to reach beyond my fears and grasp what is real. And my reality in this moment is I am alive, I am still functioning, I am still experiencing a positive quality of life, and I am still motivated to continue to believe this, too, shall pass. It always has. I know that doesn't mean it always will, but it's important for me to remember IT ALWAYS HAS.

Someone once said, "Laughter is the best medicine". Or at least Reader's Digest did anyway. When I cease being able to laugh in my life, I believe I will truly cease. So...tomorrow I laugh again and I know I will find something hilariously funny to blog about!

I think this is the point where you are supposed to say, dear reader, “Thank you for sharing”, and then we go have some coffee and doughnuts...

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