I have had people ask me, “What is MS?” If I say it stands for multiple sclerosis. It’s a chronic progressive disease where the nerves in the brain and spinal cord, and the optic nerves in the eyes become damaged as the outer coating on the nerves called myelin gets eaten away by the immune system causing numbness, speech impairment, muscle coordination difficulties, blurred vision and severe fatigue (and that’s just the tip of the iceberg of what we go through)…I tend to get a blank stare and “huh” comes tumbling out of their mouth. Either that or they proceed to give me their cure for this incurable disease or tell me about a relative of theirs with MS that died.
It’s interesting to me that we live in a time where knowledge is readily available and easily accessible (more accessible that any modern day business with wheelchair ramps and elevators) yet so few actually use the knowledge available to them to actually KNOW anything. We are pros at the latest gossip and celebrity news; we know all the cheat codes and hidden passageways in the newest released video games; we even know the difference between tap water, distilled water, spring water and mineral water; but when it comes down to things that actually matter, we are fairly ignorant.
If I were to write an entry in an acronym dictionary on what MS stands for, it would look something like this…
MS – an acronym for:
Mystery Solved (coming soon to a theater near you)
The next time someone asks me, “What is MS?”, I’m going to whip out one of my acronyms because even in our highly intelligent and knowledge driven society, people can’t seem to grasp an understanding of multiple sclerosis. But I don’t blame them too much, I still have trouble with MS and I’m the one actually living with it every day.
Don’t get too discouraged when you find people are clueless about MS. I didn’t know anything about it until I was diagnosed with it. But now…now I’m more knowledgable than even some of the finest Neurologists out there. Maybe that means I’ve actually earned a doctorate degree. So call me Dr…Dr. Penelope! I like the sound of that.
I have an MS Degree and didn’t even know I was studying for it. It’s not an honorary degree either. It’s a real life, up close and personal, in your face degrees. One of those “I studied my butt off” degrees. Do you have an MS degree too?