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I miss what I used to be

I’m now 58. I was diagnosed with MS over ten years ago.

In my old life I was a runner, running mini-marathons regularly. I loved to work out – loved to take the dogs to the local state park and hike for miles. I loved working in the yard for hours, weeding and planting.

And now? I feel like a flight of stairs is Mt. Everest. I walk with the aid of a cuff sending electrical impulses to my foot. The word “hurry” no longer exists for me. It takes an hour and a half to shower and dry my hair. I cannot do any task which requires small motor skills. I no longer recognize the person I used to be.

I work part-time at a job where I sit and not much else. I used to be the most energetic teacher – and a very good one. I now make $12 an hour, four hours a day, Monday through Thursday and am exhausted. Yet since I can still move, I don’t qualify for disability.

So I smile, sit at home alone, isolated. I do have a completely understanding husband who is gone most of the day. One daughter lives across the country and the other just doesn’t help me.

I am lonely, I am alone; I am a ghost of my former self.

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


  • Suzzie
    6 years ago

    I was diagnosed in 2009…I am Second Dairy Progressive going on TWO year’s now.
    I in one point and time in my life was a hard worker for a small auto motive shop doing quality control, I would go out for long walk’s sun or rain, and LOVED going out with friend’s and family and dance and meet new people. I started slowly losing my ability to moving boxes at work and standing for 8 to 10 hours day got so painful that I finally had to stop in 1998 and become a stay at home mom to my only daughter. My going for walk’s got down to wishing I could and my going out and enjoying life with family and friends stopped all together. I now live alone and four hours away from family and an hour away from my daughter and my best friend and LUCKY if I see them both once maybe twice a month. Living with MS is the hardest thing I ever want to do.I have now depending on the day a cane,walker,wheel chair, and now a POWER CHAIR. I am in PAIN 24-7 not much is helping. It seams the only thing that is getting me up and out of now is one of my young care giver’s brings her baby with her, She gets a pillow and lay’s him on it and I just enjoy talking to him just so sweet when they are so tiny and they watch and listen to you.

  • Barbara
    6 years ago

    I am a Barbara too. I became 61 in Dec. 2012, MS diagnosis 1993, cane 2004. I’ve lived with this a long time- sure, it takes longer to do everything- hey, I’m slow, that’s okay because I am not who I was and I am not a ghost of that self– NEITHER ARE YOU! I did not have an understanding husband: divorce after 34 years! You are loved- even if only part of the day make it more obvious to you: notes, e messages, chocolate on both pillows– an automatic coffee pot to wake up to, a ritual kiss or hug for any reason! Make a date, take a slow shower and let him open the car door, let you out at the entrance, wait for him and soak it in- being feminine- After my divorce, a gentleman was interested- even tho I had a cane and was slow— re-inventing femininity hugely helped my sadness.
    I thought it was necessary for help to live near one of my three grown children and so i moved to another state –no matter what age: a person’s idea of “help” may not be your concept of “help”. Last week, I visited my brother in another state for his 70th birthday. His advice: decide how independent you want to be and you can make it happen. Notice- the advice is not positive or negative…Please, please : you are an evolving self- don’t go down any other path…the journey starts with every step. Today is St. Patrick’s day – that’s worth a smile!

  • theresa45
    6 years ago

    I was diagnosed in 2010 right after my mother passed, and my left side went numb, thought id had a stroke from all the stress, saw a neurologist and mri over 30 leisions and spinal there you have it. now I am on Tysabri with a port in my chest and not feeling any better, taking Provigil baclaflin Topamax and im seeing a counsler but the dark depresson we feel so hard to over come and I try with all my heart to get out even with having a care giver and that is trying to help, nothing. im on disability and iv never not worked I used to climb and and hike and ride im not able to walk a straight line now. so feeling alone is very much a part of my life as well, im sorry u feel like a ghost of your self but I get it! because I am as well. I need help but every where I look I find nothing just the same info, and no relief in sight. others with this disease live so normal others are effected horriblely. sorry for the spelling my memory and congnitive abilities are crud. I wish for some one to help me so despretly.

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