Last updated: February 2019
Some days, I find myself feeling guilty. I feel guilty because although I have MS, and have had it for many years, my MS has remained stable and overall mild. I look around me to see other MS friends who are having a tough time, and it makes me wonder why them and not me. Please don’t misunderstand and think I’m complaining, because I’m most certainly not, but it’s hard to find joy in your blessings when those around you are hurting.
Even when I feel good, I feel guilty
I’m a very empathetic and compassionate person. I hurt when others hurt. I’ve felt MS pain and sorrow, and I know it all too well. Sometimes seeing and knowing that someone else is experiencing that also is hard for me. I hate knowing someone else is dealing with MS because I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. It’s the same with any other disease and illness. You see the havoc it’s wrecked on your own life, so to see someone else experiencing it is tough. I find that those days that I do feel good, I feel guilty.
I start questioning why I feel good
That’s the problem with feeling good with MS. When I feel bad; I feel pretty bad. But, when I feel good, it can feel wrong. When I feel good, I feel like maybe I don't fit the part; like I’m a fraud. I shouldn’t feel good with MS right? I even start questioning why I feel good. Were they wrong about my diagnosis? Do I really have MS after all? These are obviously silly questions, but our mind can play crazy tricks on us. It makes me feel like if I’m not dealing with crippling pain or fatigue that it's not “believable” that I have MS.
I hate that I feel guilty
I hate that I feel that way, too, because I know those things aren’t true, but I think those feelings are why I feel guilty. Many have very physical symptoms and deal with crippling pain every single day. Those are the ones who can’t escape it and never have a day where they ask themselves those questions. I don’t want to continue using my time to feel guilty, though. It's not in my control that some days I feel better than others. I could be wrong, but I don’t think others who truly care would ever want those with an illness who have good days to feel bad about them.
We should embrace the good days
It’s like someone who has really great good luck and wins the lottery. You may envy them for a moment, but it doesn’t make a difference in your immediate life, so you move on. You don’t hate them for it. It also reminds me to embrace the good days. I shouldn’t waste my time feeling guilty, because that’s not doing me any favors. Instead, I should hang onto the good days and run with them.
The good days don't always last
Those good days don’t always last, so instead of fretting over things that are silly and out of my control, I should choose to accept the good days and pursue them with joy. I shouldn’t feel guilty for feeling well, and for feeling “normal,” I should be elated! So as 2019 is here, that’s a goal I'm going to accomplish: less guilt, and more celebrating when I feel my best and dare I say it, MS-free. It doesn’t happen often, but when it does it’s definitely worth a happy dance!
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