Just Let It In
Last updated: March 2023
Just let it in.
I was laying here. Just lost in thought. A whisper, from out of nowhere entered my mind. It is one I heard before, and will most likely hear again. For the rest of my life.
"You're sick, Tommy. You have primary progressive multiple sclerosis."
I don't know why my subconscious reminds me of this. Why does it need to reinforce a subject that I know all too well? Yet, he does and will again. After the whisper I close my eyes and think long and hard. Images flash before me. Feeding tubes, urination bags. Life support. Paralysis. Death.
Images that come and go. Thoughts that are never spoken, afraid if told, give it life. You want to run and hide. Afraid, trembling and lost. But no matter where I may go, he will always follow. The shadow that binds.
"You're sick, Tommy. You have primary progressive multiple sclerosis," he says again and again.
Just leave me alone, MS
I do my best. I try as hard as I might. To raise my hands, covering my ears. To block the whispers that flood my senses. Yet, the whisper continues.
"Stop!" I scream. "You're torturing me!"
Tears run down my cheeks. I sink to my knees and hold the floor. Shallow breaths escape me. Why won't he stop; I know this. I have known this for years. Just stop. Let me be, leave me alone.
"Just let it in," a soft female voice spoke.
I freeze. Unable to move. I look up. Trying to find the source of the new voice.
I heard it. A faint whisper. It calmed me.
“Just let it in" she said again.
I slump to the floor. Exhausted, defeated. Crumpled.
“Just let it in," she said once more, gently.
With closed eyes, I say to the empty room, "What ... let what in?"
Let in hope
"Hope?" I cry. "There is no such thing as hope! Not anymore." I scream.
I pound the floor with my fist. Looking up, I see an empty room. Yet, I know I am not alone. I stop, breathing raggedly, I manage to crawl to the wall and slump myself against it. Wiping away the tears with my palms, I hear her once more. This time next to me, I can feel her breath in my ear.
"Just let it in. Hope."
She holds my hand. Her fingers gently squeeze my palm.
"Don't despair. Just let it in. Let it swallow you with its light. Its warmth. Its love. Let hope in."
Suddenly the images of feeding tubes, urination bags and death leave me. I now see vast meadows. Filled with wildflowers. Children playing, laughing and screaming. Of picnics, of blue skies and sunshine.
There, my friend. There is hope
I look next to me and I see a small rabbit. She sits besides me. Unafraid. Her little nose twitches, her long floppy ears waver from a breeze. She looks at me, deeply with a gaze that holds me in place.
"There, my friend. There is hope. There is love. There is a future. There is life."
The little bunny takes a step closer. Each paw sinks into the grassy meadow. One little step and then another. Once she reaches my waist, she curls up and presses her back against me. Falling into a peaceful sleep. I can feel her breathing, it calms me. Giving me a feeling I haven't felt in ages.
I sit there, I look at the children. I look beyond and see the rolling hills that surround the grassy meadow. Life. It's here. It's always been here. It seems so obvious now. All it took it were four simple words.
"Just let it in."
All will be well
I take a deep breath and exhale. Suddenly, out of nowhere, I feel a smile form on my face. I close my eyes, lean my head back and feel the sunshine warm my bones.
"I did." I said to the sleeping bunny. "I let it in."
"All will be well," the bunny whispered.
"All will be well."
What does advocacy mean to you as someone living with multiple sclerosis? Please select all that apply: