Are You Tired Of Canceling Plans When You Don't Feel Well? Every Crisis Is An Opportunity

“I always say don’t make plans, make options.” ~Jennifer Aniston

It happened again. Another big “it" for me. One of the (many) reasons I hate about multiple sclerosis.

I had to change plans at the last minute.

Had to change plans at the last minute... again

I was forced to cancel airline tickets, explain for the millionth time in my MS life why I couldn’t attend an event, and disappoint a friend.

It was something I was looking forward to. Doing something for the greater good. And afterward, I’d have dinner with an old friend.

But once again MS knocked on my door. Loudly.

MS responding to extra stress

I had a difficult week, and I think my MS responded to the stress by giving me a hard time.

I felt ill the night before my trip, and when my body continued to give me problems at 5 AM, I knew I better start texting, emailing, and canceling my trip.

Wish I had a quarter for every MS cancelation

I wish I had a quarter for every time I had to cancel something because of MS. Over the years there’ve been dates, parties, concerts, business trips, and even a vacation.

I’d be rich from all of the quarters I’d save up.

That doesn't mean you should stop making plans

Should we stop making plans to avoid having to cancel them if we don't feel well?

NO.

MS does not define what or who we are. It is a small part of the total sum of who we are. And we cannot allow it to swallow us up and spit us out like the pit of a peach.

Of course, it’s human nature to feel bad about having to cancel things, to change them because we don’t feel well. It wouldn’t be “normal” if we felt nothing at all. But should those feelings stop us from living the best life we can?

I will not let MS define who I am

I believe we are more resilient than we think we are. And I absolutely refuse to give my MS the satisfaction of defining who I am and stopping me from having the best life possible.

 “A woman is like a tea bag. You can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt

MS has challenged my relationships

Over the years, I’ve had friends that backed away from me after mentioning the word “disabled” in describing MS and how it affects me. Have you experienced that?

They certainly showed their true colors at that pivotal point in time. And when they did that, I eventually realized that in the end, I was better off without them.

Over the years I’ve changed plans with a few couples because my MS was acting up. Some never attempted to make plans with us again. Have you experienced that?

The realities of disability

I felt sorry for their children because it’s an ignorant parent who cannot understand the fragility of a human being and the realities of disability. I hope they lose their ignorance for the sake of their children.

“False friends are like our shadow, keeping close to us while we walk in the sunshine, but leaving us the instant we cross into the shade.” Christian Nestell 

My chapter of party hosting has closed

I’ve backed away from making large dinner parties for family and friends. I used to enjoy inviting people to my home, particularly when my son was young. But in recent years, fatigue and numbness have disagreed with my opinion of making these parties, so that chapter of my life is now closed. Have you experienced that?

Other members of my family continue to provide our family get-togethers, and I bring whatever I can to add to it. Wine, fruit salad, or a dessert. That’s my way of helping out while letting them know how thankful I am for the blessing of having their help and understanding.

Turning MS crises into opportunities

Life is all about using options at our disposal or creating new ones. These new choices can provide a different, and better, way of living our lives.

As the Buddhist quote says:

“Every crisis is an opportunity.”

I hope we can all turn our MS crises into the kind of opportunities that will enhance and enrich our lives.  And bring us inner peace.

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