The Look Of Awareness

The purpose of awareness periods are to set aside time to bring recognition to social issues or health conditions, such as multiple sclerosis. During these times, those affected by one or all lend their voices by sharing their stories and experiences to provide a personal look into what they are living with. These issues and illnesses are represented by colors, such as orange for MS (which is where I, myself, fall in).

I have MS and plenty of stories and experiences that speak to my life of the challenges and frustrations MS brings. But I don’t want to digress.

With MS, the color orange became personal

As of my diagnosis date on July 13, 2007, the color orange, the orange ribbon, and orange butterfly became personal to me. They represented a new normal for me. My new normal added a new event for my family and friends: the annual MS Walk, a fundraising event that any and everyone can partake in. The money raised can help lift up those who live with MS and those that support them.

To me the color orange represents inflammation, which can be common with MS flare-ups. The butterfly symbolizes the look of a butterfly image on an MRI of the brain, as well as the symptom changes of MS. And ribbons are symbols used for a plethora of topics, issues, and conditions colored by the appropriate hue for each.

Awareness is key. Not only do I share my story for others to understand and for fellow MS’rs to know they are not alone, I sport my orange, ribbons, and butterflies. And I write poems. Here’s one I hope you’ll enjoy.

An awareness poem I wrote

The orange shines bright for MS awareness

The color orange isn’t just the hue of a delicious sort of fruit sitting amongst a basket of red apples, yellow bananas, or green pears.

Just like the intended image of a vibrant butterfly has meaning beyond a winged insect seen perched on a luminous flower after flying through the air.

And a bright orange ribbon isn’t solely the piece of cloth tied and pinned to prettily adorn a blouse or to wrap a cute little ponytail.

You see there is more to the color orange and the vibrant butterfly and the bright ribbon. They are symbols for multiple sclerosis, a chronic autoimmune disease of which currently there is no cure. A disease where nerve damage disrupting communication between the brain and body brings dim days to endure.

The symbols let those affected by MS know that we are not forgotten, research is continuous, and our woes not dismissed.

Our voices are amplified through sharing our diverse stories and experiences, particularly in March, the month we shine a bright orange light on MS Awareness.

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