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Grieving What Multiple Sclerosis Has Taken From Me

This is a difficult post to write. I try to be a positive voice for multiple sclerosis (MS). I want to focus on how it has shaped me, made me stronger and more resilient. I like to think I don’t dwell on the things that make me different.

I can be all those things and also admit that having MS is hard and it has taken a lot from me. And in recognizing this, grieving for what I have lost.

When I first started writing this I started with a list of what exactly I have lost. I couldn’t stand to look at the words. I clicked save, put it away and went on with my life. But a few weeks later during a particularly difficult day, I pulled it out, reread the list (added some new ones to it) and had a healthy, cathartic cry. And then I felt better.

I miss running, wearing high heels and dancing. I miss running
down (or up) the stairs, I miss not having every decision I make revolve around how it will impact my MS. I miss being “normal.”

And as much as I mourn what I have lost, I also grieve for the things MS never allowed me — like the ability to play tag with my kids.

I hope that sharing this here will allow others to also (guilt-free) acknowledge the crappiness of it all. To recognize that some days are heavy…and heavy in ways not too many others can understand.

So let’s recognize it, maybe (virtually) cry together and feel better for having done it.

Photo credit: Aleksandra Golubtsova/Getty Images