Monday, November 28, 2016

76 Things #21: Like Nails on a Chalkboard

After enjoying a Thanksgiving feast, many of us then partake in a post-Turkey meal nap...but for adults, that nap might be delayed or interrupted by certain responsibilities.

For example, those dishes aren’t going to clean themselves!  

What if I told you there was a way of getting out of doing those dreaded dishes?


<Wait for it…>

Ok, there is…but unfortunately, it's a symptom of my multiple sclerosis.  

I still help with the dishes but when it comes to metal pots or pans ---- I just can’t do it.

For some reason, touching certain items, like pots and pans, sends unpleasant shivers throughout my body.  
In fact, just looking at some metal items – for example, a roasting pan – stirs up this discomfort.

Even as I think about it while typing, I can feel the shivers starting to form…

These shivers aren’t the emotional tingle you get when watching or reading something inspiring; rather, think of your body’s response to nails on a chalkboard.

It’s not just metal pots and pans.  The styrofoam containers that eggs come in?  That’s like kryptonite to me.  The noise it makes when opened…even just touching it, my body revolts even at the thought of it.

Sometimes, odd symptoms like these come and go; I truly never know what a new day might bring. 

But I’ve been living with and adapting to extreme sensitivities like these for many years now -- the #21 thing you might not now about (my) MS.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Hockey Player Bryan Bickell Diagnosed with MS

NHL player Bryan Bickell was recently diagnosed with MS and this quote spoke to me...and brought back memories:

"...since the 2015 playoffs, I've been struggling to understand what was going on with my body. Again during the past few weeks, it felt like something wasn't right."

It took many years before they figured out what was going on with me. The diagnosis wasn't easy to hear but it also brought with it a certain answer to so much confusion.

I hope Bryan has found a similar type of peace...and I wish him well in his quest to play hockey again.
Former Blackhawks forward Bryan Bickell diagnosed with multiple sclerosis

Friday, November 11, 2016

76 Things #20: Missing out on something special

When I was diagnosed, our first child, Vincent, was only 17 months old.

It was in May of 2008 and I learned I had MS at The Mayo Clinic, near the end of a week-long stay in Minnesota.

My parents took care of Vincent while my wife and I made the trip up to the Mayo.  While we were there – the week I was diagnosed with MS – Vincent finally learned to walk.

It was disappointing to miss that special moment (luckily, my parents were there to witness and chronicle it)….but, at the same time, it also highlighted to me how beautiful life is.

While we were away, our little son kept growing.  Even as I was getting poked and prodded in Minnesota, life went on.  And so would mine, too.

It was an important discovery - I wasn’t diagnosed with MS, my family was.

I had that realization early on when we – my wife and I – missed out on the first time our son was able to walk by himself.  Because of this, it’s been important to me to avoid having MS dictate to my family what direction we take next. 

Yes, sometimes it produces some sizable potholes or forces some unfortunate detours (missing our kiddos events, trips are planned around my energy level, various doctor’s appointments, etc.) - but I don't want MS to rule our hearts and mind – because no matter what impediment we are faced with, no dream should be out of reach.

Me and Vincent - about a month before I went to the Mayo Clinic

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Pleasure in the Tiny Moments

Thank you to The Mighty for publishing my latest story - please check it out and share with others!

Click here to read my story!

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