Dancing With MS

I love to indulge in a good celebration – especially birthdays. I’m much like my Aunt Edna who also enjoys celebrating her special day in true party fashion. One of the things I loved most about her celebrations was the ‘line’ dancing… for example, the ever popular Electric Slide!

At the start of the familiar beat, my mother, my Aunt Catherine, and the majority of their siblings would hurry to the dance floor, then my father and some of the other party people joined them. By the time “…are you coming with meee?”, there were more on the floor, and at the point of “…let me take you on a party riiiide…” I, along with my sisters and cousins, were up (if not before), but at the point of “and I’ll teach you, teach you, teach you.. I’ll teach you the Electric Sliiiide..”, pretty much EVERYONE was ‘sliding’!

Then this happened:

2006

Dover Air Force Base NCO Club…Aunt Edna’s Birthday Party..The Cha Cha Slide…Me and my father’s dance floor exchange:

Daddy: Come on..you not doin’ nothin’! (As he watches with a grin and a question behind his eye at my uncharacteristic stilt like movements on the dance floor).

Me: I’m tryin.. I must be tired!

(Trying to ‘play it off’ because I was actually struggling to finish the song while wondering what was going on to make my legs so achy and feel like they weighed 500 lbs – each!

2007

That incident, in addition to several other symptoms, prompted a referral to the neurologist for a much needed examination. The result: I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

That Cha Cha Slide was the last line dance for me, but my zeal for ‘grooving’ and celebrating life remains – in spite of MS challenges. My dance has not stopped, it simply changed.. From my seat or wheelchair, you’ll find me doing a little something called “Dianne’s Wave”!

#WeAreStrongerThanMS

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