4 Important Takeaways From MS Awareness Month
We owe so much gratitude to the community for teaming up with us to help spread awareness for MS Awareness Month. Although increasing awareness doesn't end with the month of March, it serves as a special time for us all to band together towards one goal with intention and energy.
As we reflect on this past month, what stands out the most to us is the powerful voices we heard from own community members. Here are the 4 key takeaways we took to heart and will hang onto as we move into the months ahead:
1. You don't get MS until you get MS
The invisible nature of MS can take a deep toll on one's emotional and mental health. It's so hard for others to really understand what someone who is living with MS is dealing with every day. This lack of comprehension cultivates feelings of isolation and misunderstanding. In this quote above, Calie calls us to, "Please remember before the next time you jump to judge someone that they could be dealing with something bigger than you imagine." This is such a good reminder for all of us to be slow to judge and quick to practice deeper empathy and kindness towards others... because you never know what someone is dealing with beneath the surface.
2. It's emotional
No one forgets their diagnosis day. Whether you felt angry, grieved, shocked, relieved, or all of the above, being diagnosed with a chronic illness has a deep emotional impact in addition to the already physical one. This community member reflects on receiving her MS diagnosis in the quote above and writes, "Now what? Scream, cry, yell, laugh - repeat as often as needed - and continue to live." This month, many of our community members reflected on their diagnosis story and what they would say to their newly diagnosed self today if they could. Read their responses here.
3. Relationships are hard
" 'Til death do us part - or you get sick - is the new vow it seems," a community so heartbreakingly writes. As so many community members shared this month, multiple sclerosis challenges relationships to a whole new level. Whether it breaks a relationship or makes it stronger, there's no doubt that MS is often the unwanted third wheel in one's love life. If MS is putting unwanted stress and strain on your relationship, you are not alone. Connect with others' and join in the discussion on our FB page here.
4. Symptoms have a drastic impact on daily life
Those with MS experience a wide range of symptoms, and no two people's are exactly the same. From pain and fatigue to vision and cognitive problems, symptoms have a drastic impact on daily life. MS symptoms can feel like one thing after another, as this community member shares above, "I just want to wake up feeling okay."
Thank you for reading and for participating in MS Awareness Month. We are so grateful for our community members who sincerely share what life with MS is like and inspire us daily.
Do you celebrate your MS Anniversary?