Spilling the Tea
I love good tea... as in interesting, informative conversation. I also love iced tea, sweet tea, and hot tea with a dash of cream. I just love tea!
During my working years
My coworkers (who became actual friends over time) and I would get together for dinner at one of our favorite eateries. No children, calls, paperwork, break time restriction... Just great food, fellowship, and conversation. And we "spilled tea" amongst ourselves.
Those times our schedules used to mesh
When all five sisters - Denise, Dianne, Debra, Darlene, and Doreen – (aka the 5 D's, the D posse, or Scotty's Angelz) were all in town together, two things were bound to happen. There would be lots of sister pics and a sister night - a night with just us enjoying one another and our sistership. Whether we're out and about or in and ‘chilling,’ we had fun catching up, sharing funny memories and there was always tea to spill.
Monday through Friday
My daughter comes in from school and has a myriad of stories about her day. I sometimes wonder how she is so academically engaged with so much going on with this and that all around her, but she does quite well and I will remain her attentive audience as she recants the current days happenings and, more often than not, spills her tea.
The last several years
I, however, cannot be outdone. I spill tea... and I literally spill tea. Multiple Sclerosis has accosted my body and, amongst a host of other symptoms, its effects have contracted and weakened my hands. For me, holding a cup of tea would most assuredly result in it truly spilling from the cup that I would undoubtedly drop.
But... rather than to dwell on that particular aspect of spilling the tea, the literal aspect, I concentrate on tea that I don't mind spilling such as the ‘411’ on MS. That includes sharing stories about living with it to encourage and inspire others who may have MS or perhaps another condition, spreading information to bring awareness to such a complex disease, or writing about tools to help cope with the challenges one faces living with a chronic disease.
Here's some tea I'll spill...
MS is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body. The body’s own immune system targets the central nervous system (CNS) and causes damage to important cells and tissues. Damage from MS in the CNS alters, slows or stops nerve transmission. Affecting more women than men, statistically speaking, it's commonly diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50. There are four types identified as clinically isolated syndrome (CIS), relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS), primary progressive MS (PPMS), and secondary progressive MS (SPMS). There are common and less common symptoms, some worse than others.
The key is to keep moving until you can't, focus on what you can do as opposed to what you can't, think positive as much as you can and every morning when you open your eyes, pat yourself on the back because you've conquered another day.
A fine example of how "spilling the tea" not only makes for great conversation, but it's truly good for the soul… though maybe not the carpet!
Does your employer provide workplace accommodations due to your MS?