On the same day I was diagnosed with MS my mother-in-law was being placed into a nursing home. My in-laws had a lot of other things to go through so I made the decision not to tell them.
In the weeks that followed I had to stop working altogether. This meant a loss of income, and my husband had to work more hours and we had to make many changes in how we did things. However I was able to take our planned summer road trip. It wasn’t easy and we did make changes along the way but I got through it and with good memories. About a month after we got back home my mother-in-law passed away. So we had another sad event to deal with.
Everyone went back to their normal routines except me. I had not yet told my parents or my grown kids about my MS and waited six months to do so. They all lived in different parts of the country and one in Canada. Due to my mom’s religious beliefs (not mine) she was the hardest one to tell. After I told her she told me not to ever again bring up the subject or use the MS word. She refused to deal with it so I never discussed my MS with my mother again. However, my dad was always very kind about it and asked how I was doing if she was not around.
Now everyone knew I had MS but back then nobody wanted to talk about it or gave out any comfort or help. I soon found myself very alone with this horrendous disease and had no support system at all. I was slowly sinking into a huge depression and thinking I didn’t want to live anymore. I started giving my things away. This was about two years into the diagnosis. Then one really bad day as I was about to give up, my beloved dog came in to see what I was doing, sat next to me and looked concerned. When I looked into her sweet face I just burst into tears and said to her “what in world am I doing?” I just sat there holding her and thought to myself…I am going to fight this with all I have even though it is incurable and I will always have it!
This was my first turning point. I didn’t know it back then, but there were so many more good turning points to come. Of note, you will see in my blogs that I think dogs are the coolest things on the face of the earth! After all dog spelled backward spells God and they certainly are a priceless gift to so many!
Next Blog: The Good I Learned from Having MS
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