I have Multiple Sclerosis. That’s what this blog is about, me, living with Multiple Sclerosis (MS). But not simply living with MS, but living well with MS. I wrote the book of the same name as this blog to help spread my word about what it’s like to have MS, but also and more importantly to help people to realise having MS isn’t the end of the world.
My world changed when I was diagnosed with MS back in 2010, that’s for sure. But not all of the changes were bad things. I felt this potentially devastating diagnosis gave me permission to finally have a good look at my life, and to think hard about what was most important for me to do.
So, my writing and poetry took a big (but careful) step forward in my life. I committed more deeply to myself as a poet and writer, rather than just being someone who wrote a bit, sometimes. I committed totally to getting out the memoir “Mick Jane and Me – Living Well With MS”, and once it was written and printed, I did my best at marketing the book. That’s why this blog exists, and why I am trying to do more public speaking regarding my life …
Anyway, back to the topic of this post – New Years Resolutions. I decided I wasn’t going to make any rash promises to do anything in particular this year. Rash promises lead to crash promises! No, what I instead did was made a promise to myself that I would do my best to do the best things for myself and for others.
Smiling at strangers, being involved in volunteer things, having coffee with friends and listening to them when they feel the need to talk. These are examples of doing good things for others. Doing the best things for myself – this involves trying to lose a little bit of weight getting fitter and building up my muscles, trying to eat a healthy and nutritionally sound diet, writing and learning to promote what I write, and keeping on being strongly involved with my family and friends.
That is all going relatively well, and the thing I’m mostly using for the working on my muscles is our Wii Fit machine. I am trying to connect with the machine three times a week, for thirty minutes or more. The three times a week isn’t really happening every week, but the intent is there, and that is a good thing. I am actively thinking about it, even if I don’t actually manage to find the time to do it.
I also do a daily challenge that is sent to me via email once a day – giving me a “Daily Challenge”. these challenges aren’t terribly difficult, but again, the intent to be active is a good one. I also have two pairs of hand weights, and I lift them sometimes. I also, if I’m out in the back yard, and I feel like it, will do some simple standing yoga exercises, that are actually yoga exercises from the Wii Fit. I sometimes do one of the muscle exercises too.
Keeping active is good for both my body and my brain, and anything good for them is good for my spirit and my writing too! Along with the MS, I apparently have MCI as well. This is Mild Cognitive I something. I always forget that word … one of the symptoms of MCI is forgetfulness. and I sure demonstrate that symptom every time I try to come up with what that silly word is – I almost had it then, IIIIIIII ineptitude, idiocy, no, not them. Ah hah, got it! Mild Cognitive Impairment.
So I have that, but the more thinking and brain connections I can make, the better I will do with that. I hope so anyway. I haven’t actually talked to anyone medical about this issue, not officially anyway. Do I need to do that? I don’t know. Perhaps a chat to one of the nurses from the MS Society in SA might be a good idea … something to attempt to remember for the future. In the meantime, I will continue working on Living Well!