Living With MS

Early Retired, but Positive Hedonist
By Brit B. Laursen

In early 2005, my body within a few days became a mixture of strange, clumsy, and numb things. Especially my hands; They felt like boxing gloves. They played a trick on me and would not cooperate with my brain.

I was immediately examined and after 3 months when I was scanned a second time. I got diagnosed at that time, but my body still felt like "my own". I had figured that I just had some kind of virus.

For me, getting diagnosed was very disfiguring. I immediately saw myself in a wheelchair, unhappy, helpless. As a single parent, I was worried what would become of my children. Would I be able to take care of them properly? Would they also have multiple sclerosis later in life?

After a few days, with many gloomy thoughts, I decided that I would not run around in the ring of a disease. I'd at least try to slow the pace by being positive.

It is now June 2009. The diagnosis led me to leave my lovely work as teacher. I am now in early retirement at the age of 33. Specifically, I have p.g.a. fatigue, with which I need a nap of 3 hours each day to function. The physical limitations are, fortunately, still not to be found.

So to all the newly diagnosed: Life does not end here. It does not need to be unhappy. There will be good times and laughs. I have cried out and cursed asking why this happened to me (one should be allowed to do this) but one must look around. There are major complications in the world, some of which are too difficult to amend. Look around. There are others living with sclerosis whom are living a great life. We have our own situations to contend with, but the problems are often more manageable when you share them with others. And then we can certainly enjoy ourselves and talk about anything else than living with sclerosis. It is only a part of us, not all of us.

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