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The Unhelpful Sidekick

19 June 2015

‘I have MS, MS doesn’t have me!’ This rings true for those of us who can wade through the grief of being diagnosed with an incurable disease and thrown into the unknown and come out of it still believing that life is good. 

I was not born with MS, it has come to me later in life. Well you could say smack bang in the middle of it, just when I had plans for bigger and better things. While accepting my diagnosis like Miss Congeniality at a pageant, with a courteous smile and a wave while trying not to trip up the pageant winner on our way out, I in no way have become my MS.  Now in saying that, one cannot leave home without it. Can’t hang it up with the winter coats when the weather turns fine. It travels with me wherever I go like a super hero’s sidekick loyal to the end.

Unlike a trusty sidekick, MS has a personality disorder. You’re more likely to get The Joker or The Penquin, never knowing which one will turn up. It is unhelpful, dirty and doesn’t play nice, a hindrance on every adventure and there is no getting rid of it. Even on the good days it’s lurking in the shadows waiting for its big entrance.

We are a package deal my MS and me, it has become a shade of me. Creeping into all parts of my life. Just ask my husband he is none to impressed that we have an unwanted intruder in our bed. To accept me is to accept that I am bringing MS along for the ride, and trust me you better be strapped in and holding on, because this sidekick knows how to ruin a good time. 

Comments (27)

Lurking in the shadows - what an excellent way to put it! It's hard to forget completely that's it woven it's way into the fabric of my life, and our family existence. I look forward to hearing more about your sidekick's wayward personality and how you have adapted to tame/accept it.

Thanks for articulating this Amber. For some of us 'we do have MS, MS really does have us' and no amount of platitudes will alter the reality, and may only leave us feeling diminished. Yes life can still be good, but it will not be effortlessly good, or good without that underlying thread of MS that runs continuously through the fabric of our lives now. Love your sense of humour. Thanks for the smile!

Thank You Lawrie for your comment. My sense of your humour is the back bone of my coping with what life throws at me. Glad I could make you smile. :-)

I really related to the line "Even on the good days it’s lurking in the shadows waiting for its big entrance." - That's SO true Amber. It's quite unnerving to have that shadow waiting to jump out at you again when you least expect it!

Really looking forward to hearing more about how you and your trusty sidekick navigate the unknown. To plunge the depths of grief and still seek the good in life (and find humour in it!) is pretty darn awesome. Thanks.

Hi Pilgrim, Thank you for your comment. Look forward to sharing more with you. Of course as we know its not all laughs and giggles, though I do try and find the funny side of things when I can. :-)

Well written description, amber! :) My mum was diagnosed with MS when I was 7 and it is a tough road, with lots of lessons of compassion and empathy. I look forward to your future posts :)

Hi Amy, thank you for your comment. I am so glad as a family member you could relate to my description, as I am a firm believer that it is not just the person diagnosed with MS, it is the whole family. Your comment has prompted me to write another post. :-) Hope your Mum is travelling as well as she can. Sending smiles your way. :-)

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