A person uses their hands to fit a puzzle piece into the corresponding space.

Getting In What I Can, While I Can

Had I’d known or even had a clue that my life’s trajectory would lead me to live with a chronic, degenerative disease, some of the choices I made would have undoubtedly been different. I would’ve definitely lived by the ‘more’ creed.

I want more

For instance, I would’ve gone on more nice, leisurely walks or even ran more. I would have taken opportunities to travel more, gone to the beach more, visited family/friends more and cooked at home more as opposed to ordering out. I would’ve danced another dance, drove another mile, played that game of volleyball at the family reunion, and a host of other activities that I can either no longer do or have to exert quite a bit of thought, effort, and energy to complete. That is why, at this juncture in my life, it’s extremely important to me to get in all I can while I can…before I can’t.

A good day

I have a car with hand controls that I drive if I’m having a ‘good’ day. It’s maybe only to drive to church, take my daughter to the store or to get a snack and to be able to take Bailee, our puppy, with us. The outings are rare, but I cherish these times because they could conceivably be gone all too soon. Nowadays, it’s increasingly tiresome and difficult to walk so I essentially utilize my wheelchair. But, I keep my walker near and for the short distances that I can walk, I do – with an understanding that it may not be a ‘luxury’ I’m afforded at some point in the future.

Enjoying the time

I love creative writing. My hands aren’t always cooperative so I have to sometimes use the voice to text feature. However, I refuse to solely use it because I want to utilize my hands, no matter how limited the function, in case a time comes when I cannot.

Do it now!

My point is, I want to – actually have to – do everything I can do now because once it’s gone, like so much is already, it’s just that – gone. I recall hearing on one of my favorite shows, Grey’s Anatomy, “cause you never think that the last time is the last time. You think there will be more. You think you have forever but you don’t.” Though this sentiment can be applied to other circumstances, I can attribute it to my situation as it relates to the limitations that a degenerative disease like MS spawns. Who knew that the last dance on my feet would be the last dance on my feet? Why wouldn’t I have thought there’d be more chances to do the things I miss now that I so casually I put off? I was just living my life and taking for granted ‘it’ wouldn’t happen to me. Yet, MS did. It happened.

Life’s lesson

If there was a lesson to be learned here, I’d say it’d be to do all you can while you can because one never knows… As for me, I don’t live in regret because I’m too busy these days getting in all I can while I can.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The MultipleSclerosis.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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