A rose is depicted in three stages from a grayed-out bud to a colorful full bloom.

Appreciating Life Despite the Challenges of SPMS

Rubbing my eyes as I awaken, I'm met with the typical blurriness that optic neuritis bestowed years ago. To accompany it is my heavy, full, and impatient bladder screaming, "GO! GO! YOU'VE 1.5 SECONDS OR...!" There's no choice but to oblige, only... I must do so on legs that feel laden with 500-pound weights which let me know in no uncertain terms that it's not a 'hurry along, get up and go' type of party. I think about a compromise between the three - my eyes, bladder, and legs - yet that option is not realistic.

Racing to reach the bedside commode

Okay, so things aren't going so well. I'm finally up, and the bedside commode is right there - so very close, yet so very far - especially since now on the scene is that empty feeling in my head, that 'can't get right' feeling that deems me speechless if asked to describe it because, well, I just can't. But the show must go on so... if I can just get my tightly clawed fingers to open to grasp the walker for this transfer. "Calm down, bladder!" I utter as I coach my legs, "Come ON, please, we can do this!" And success! Bathroom adventure successfully completed, and I'm back in my little blue lift chair a.k.a. my bed.

Limited energy, burning pain, and more challenges

Sound like a lot? It is. No one deserves to have that much chaos first thing in the morning - or wee hours of the morning -  before they even begin their day. No one. I'm just saying. Now, back to it, because are we done? Not quite. Now comes the decision-making process: Is there enough energy for a shower? Should I wait a bit or just get it over with? What do I eat so I won't have to use my arm too much because it's already suffered enough trauma holding that walker tight during transfer? Do I take something for the burning that I'm starting to feel in my legs and my arm or perhaps rest and see if pains will subside with a little time out? (I take enough symptom management medicine as it is. I try to hold off on the pain medicine until I really need it. That's just me.)

Life with secondary progressive MS isn't easy

I'll stop there, but living with secondary progressive MS is no walk in the park. And it isn't just MS; look at our world today! Adversity and strife come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and forms because that's just a part of life. Some things we live through, and others we live with, but the important thing is that we are living - which means somehow, someway, we are indeed managing. It's tough, yes, but as Franklin Roosevelt once said "When you come to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on." And as I say, don't SUCcumb, OVERcome. Find the value in the life in which you live. Then, you can...

Appreciate life

Here today, gone tomorrow.

Your days are yours, time can't be borrowed.

Make each day count, make your time meaningful -

The mark in which you leave impactful, bold, and colorful.

Life can present trials, strife, troubles, and adversity.

It's resilience, perseverance, and strength that help us weather challenges and difficulties.

Acknowledge the big picture, yet taking one moment at a time,

Gives the advantage to live, not just exist throughout our lifetime.

It's not always easy, but definitely a plan,

To smell, appreciate, and grow roses when and while we can.

Leave a substantial dash so there's forever an afterglow.

Because life is short.

We're only here today and can be gone tomorrow.

Poem written by yours truly in the spirit of sending encouraging vibes that we all can benefit from!

By providing your email address, you are agreeing to our privacy policy. We never sell or share your email address.

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.

Join the conversation

or create an account to comment.