My multiple sclerosis body is in a constant state of emergency

I hate when a storm knocks the power out unexpectedly. I have a flashlight handy for those moments along with some matches and candles to help get me through at least a few days of the pending chaos. If it should stay out longer than that I also have a small bottle of propane that I can use to cook with. It’s left over from my camping days.

Living with multiple sclerosis is much like those power outage moments. Our Central Nervous System (CNS) is short circuiting on us due to downed and broken lines. When our nerves suffer damages like that it has a tendency to affect our ability to walk, talk, eat, breathe, and even speak. It would be amazing if we could simply plug into a backup battery system or a generator to restore the power until our CNS could be repaired.

Workers are dispatched the moment an outage is discovered, but most of the time the damage to our CNS is unable to be repaired thus causing our bodies to remain in a constant state of emergency. It’s not easy, but we adapt over time.

We have learned to store up extra candles, flashlights, propane tanks and matches for any possible future outages, but those things only last for so long. For many of us, our spare flashlight has already burned out and our candles have melted.

You may be experiencing an unexpected outage right now. Those times can be scary and overwhelming. It’s not easy watching life change like that, but take it from someone living with MS…sometimes things seem to get worse before they get better. Hang in there. You can’t give up now. The storm has to come to an end.

You know that old saying “when the going gets tough, the tough get going”? Well, that’s you. You’re tough. Your strength shines through every single day. You are going to make it through this storm and you are going to have an amazing story to share.

8 replies
  1. Rodger Ashton-Smith
    Rodger Ashton-Smith says:

    Thanks Penelope another gem for us to dwell on. We had an earthquake in September 2010 out at Greendale (inner Canterbury) and took out all the lights in Christchurch. I saw the stars again after many years, they are still there. I think MS is like that, it covers us but we are still there, sometimes getting out. we need as much help as we can get to get away from the mess that blocks us.

  2. Tami Laird
    Tami Laird says:

    Penelope, you’re awesome! You have inspired so many people that have MS, including myself! Getting the word out, with your humorous and articulate tones, helps to raise awareness about this perplexing and progressive disease. Because of you, I was inspired to create my own blog, based on my personal experiences after I was diagnosed last year and became homeless. God bless you and thank you for sharing your story with everyone! 😇


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