Saturday, July 29, 2017

I finally got hand!


This has been a tough year health-wise.

I’ve remained in great spirits but my brain and body just haven’t been connecting in recent months.

Not being able to tie your shoes, button your shirt or cut your own steak can be frustrating and a bit humiliating ­­­­- but I’m ecstatic to report that it appears I’ve overcome my latest exacerbation.

I’m not sure what I’ll call my latest flare-up: numb left hand?  But, numb just doesn’t accurately describe it.  I can feel things.  When I pet my dog with my left hand, I see he is a dog and know what he should feel like but with my left hand it feels like a rough surface, not soft fur.  And that’s whether I’m petting our pup, washing my hair or holding a glass, they all feel odd.  And, when this sensation was at its worst, I was unable to grip anything with my left hand, too.

It was as if somebody had put a cast over my left hand – it no longer felt part of my body.

But, as of today, I’ve recovered about 90% usage of it.  It’s not perfect, I still feel the constant tingles all over my hand – but I can grip with it, get dressed and even cut my meat.  And thankfully, I can now type with both hands again!

Over the past couple months, my focus has been on:

ü  Physical therapy – performing hand exercises, at least three times a day.  I had to stare at my hand to make sure I was actually doing them, because sometimes I couldn’t even feel if I was opening and closing my hand.

ü  I always tried to use my left hand, even when it wasn’t needed.  I’d use my left hand more to try and pick something up, open a door, etc.  I call this my “use it or lose it” mentality.

ü  Not stressing about my hand.  Meditating.  Or, as I like to joke, I just tried to “will it away”.

Are these the reasons why my hand has improved?  Perhaps.  Or maybe it was always meant to only last two months.  I know I can’t “will” MS away, but I like to think it helps.

I feel ya, George.  I finally got hand again, too...both of them!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

"The Mask" is now posted on MS Connection

Living with multiple sclerosis, I often feel like I’m wearing a mask. A disguise of sorts for protection. But sometimes, it’s hard to tell whom I’m protecting more–myself or others around me....

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Declaring Independence from MS


In honor of America's 241st birthday, a haiku about MS.  Hope you enjoy!

Today I declare

Independence from MS

I so wish to say


Alas, no such luck

It’s a bad relationship

That I am stuck in


Dizzy, pain, fatigue

Memory, balance, vision

MS has it all


But wait, there is more

Numbness, tingling, tremors

And no heat for me


The hits keep coming

I even learned a new word

Spasticity…what?


It’s more than symptoms

It changes who you are and

Who you thought you’d be


I want to beat it

But how can you beat yourself?

It is who I am


Today I declare

Independence from the fear

Of living my life


Now that I can do

Just go where the day takes me

Always with a smile


I might stumble and

I will probably fall down

But that is ok


But I want to live

I still need a lot of rest

And finding the shade


Drink lots of water

Listen to my body when

It says slow down, Mike


I can still be me

Just take a different path

A life less traveled

With MS, it does feel like aliens have taken over my body...

Monday, July 3, 2017

Multiple Sclerosis is like a box of chocolates...

...you never know what you're gonna get.

It has been a trying couple of months for my health and my latest story, now posted at The Mighty, covers some of the obstacles I've faced.

https://themighty.com/2017/07/ms-being-like-box-of-chocolate/



Saturday, July 1, 2017

What "Second Wind" Means to Somebody with MS

The dog days of summer (in the USA) are here and I thought it was an appropriate time to re-post a story I did on finding a "second wind" while living with MS.

"...the phrase second wind, describes pretty much every moment of every day for most of us living with multiple sclerosis"

Click below to read the rest:

https://www.msconnection.org/Blog/August-2015/Wind-Quest





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