Why I’m Thanking People for Posting Photos of Fireworks, as Someone With MS

I used to enjoy the summer. Going out in a dress, spending time at the beach with friends, wearing my floppy hats to protect me from the sun. The time off from school, either to vacation or to work, always made me feel happy and refreshed for the start of classes in September.

One of my favourite parts of the summer is Canada Day, which is on July 1st, because it means going to see the fireworks, spending time with friends at BBQs, going and exploring museums and activities downtown. I am sure Americans have similar types of celebrations on July 4th, and others around the world on their respective national holidays. These holidays allow us to spend time with others, to not have to work, and to enjoy the bond we have as a group of people.

Unfortunately, these types of outdoor events are now something that is difficult for me to participate in. For me, summer represents a trial and test of my endurance, mental health, and willpower. With my multiple sclerosis (MS), I have developed a heat intolerance and to a lesser extent, a cold intolerance. This makes spending long periods of time outdoors, especially in direct sunlight and in humid summer weather, virtually impossible. With the help of my cooling vest, I have been, thankfully, able to get out more. Yet, despite this, I still tend to miss out on fun events that happen during the day and in the evening if it is too hot.

This is why I am super grateful for social media. Social media allows me to see those fireworks that I am missing out on, to be able to see those beaches I cannot go to. Even if it makes me sad that I have to miss these opportunities, I am nonetheless grateful for those who do post photos up on their walls. I am also grateful for those friends who host events in their own homes, or come to the events I host at my home. This allows me to still participate in the feeling of camaraderie that I associate with the summer, while also being able to place my health first.

So this Canada day, or this 4th of July, or whatever national holiday you are celebrating, thank you in advance for sharing your firework pictures and videos. You are allowing someone who can’t be out there with you experience that magic anyway.

Image Credits: Roksi M.

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