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What I've Learned About the Hard Days With Multiple Sclerosis

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For the record, spilt wine and spilt Starbucks is ugly cry worthy.

I’m going to go ahead and apologize now. I feel like I only ever write when I’m feeling down. Like really down, like when it’s the bottom of the fifth and you pitch a home run for the opposing team and lose the game level of down. It seems like I only ever pull out the laptop and write when I don’t know what else to do and there’s no other choice than to put everything into words, and attempt to make sense of the hot mess that is my life.

OK, back to ugly crying and sad puddles of wasted cupcake Moscato.

The last few weeks have been pretty hard in the world of Laura. By hard, I mean finding out that my current job will be changing soon and experiencing some heartbreaking days that come with being a hematology/oncology nurse. I also ended up in the bathroom floor of the medicine room with a gash in my lip, a fabulous bruise and some broken teeth, some unforeseen health concerns that I was in no way shape or form expecting, and of course the usual stress that is everyone’s lives… like the first return episode of Grey’s being a total bummer.

When God handed me the multiple sclerosis crown, He couldn’t have given me something that high stress levels improve. No, He had to give me a disease that is exacerbated by stress and fatigue. Thanks God.

One of the new lovely symptoms that has graced me with it’s presence is arm weakness and numbness that is intermittent in nature and occurs at the worst possible times This has made life around my house and job pretty interesting. Not as interesting as two failed shopping trips, though.

Sunday night when I got off work I knew I needed to walk around for a little while before making the drive home. So, I went to almost every girl’s favorite vice. Target.

With a venti white chocolate mocha in hand, a red Target shopping basket, ear buds blasting my favorite Pandora station, and that handy always in fashion Target red card, I set out for some retail therapy. About an hour in, I pick up my coffee and boom, the electric shock effect followed by numbness and severe weakness hit my left arm and hand. Like a bad music video, I turned the cup completely upside down in what felt like slow motion, onto my phone, keys, self, and shopping basket.

Needless to say I left my favorite Target sticky and smelling like old milk, in tears of humiliation, defeat, and anger, and fearful that I could never show my face in my favorite Target store ever again.

Fast forward to Monday afternoon, I’m in Walmart this time because I’m still too embarrassed to enter a Target store just yet. I decided that I needed a bottle of my favorite wine to commemorate the fact that even though I have been feeling absolutely horrible and have been struggling, I’m still standing, still working and now, I’m even grocery shopping through it all like a real functioning adult. Then, boom… it all happens again, except this time, it’s more dramatic than ever. There’s something about glass shattering on icky Walmart tile that makes everyone stop mid sentence and stride to turn and look to see what has happened. Seriously, even babies stopped crying to turn and stare.

First thought through my mind, “Seriously. Why is this my life?”

Second thought, “Shit, do I still have to pay for this even though its obviously wasted? Also, is it too soon and frowned upon to step over the broken glass and grabbed another bottle?”

Third thought, “Perfect, first Target, now Walmart. I’m never shy on the dramatics.”

In the end, the entire fiasco was nothing that a three-minute cry session in my car and a phone call to my mother couldn’t fix. I mean, let’s face it, sometimes some humility and embarrassment is good for the soul, right?

What this all equals to is that no matter how much we choose to ignore things, no matter how many cable wired fences, steel walls, or trained attack dogs we put outside of our pretty glitter-filled, perfect pink bubbles that we try and live our lives in, the bad things still happen. The reality still finds us. The hard things, are still hard. The bad days are still going to occur. And, in my case, the lab results, imaging, symptoms, embarrassing trips to the ER in bloody scrubs and cervical collars, and sticky, coffee and wine messes in major department stores, will still happen. No amount of denial, perseverance, bargaining, or sarcasm can make reality any less real.

Whatever your equivalent to spilt wine is, embrace it. Cry over it, laugh over it, make fun of yourself over it and be thankful for it. You were chosen for this life. The good times, the hard times and the “glitterful” moments were hand picked for you. There’s only one you, and the world needs your best moments and your worst moments. This life is an absolute hot mess of ridiculous chaos, but it sure is glitterful.

Follow this journey on It’s a Glitterful Life.

Thinkstock Image By: KazanovskyAndrey

Originally published: July 28, 2017
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