I may not be formally qualified to advise on how to live well with Multiple Sclerosis. But, I have been living with this debilitating condition for over 25 years. But, as an MS blogger, I often feel that I should be writing about the latest breakthroughs in Multiple Sclerosis treatments. Or, I should be reporting on the most recent scientific research that will signal an end to this debilitating condition.
But, I no longer feel qualified to speak on such specialist topics. These are matters that should be reserved for people with real medical qualifications.
In the past, I assumed that just having to live with Multiple Sclerosis, qualified me to speak knowledgeably on the subject.
Yes, I can talk as if I have vast experience. I read enough medical related articles that I can employ the necessary jargon.
This reminds me of a piece of useless information. Sadly, my younger sister passed away about 10 years ago. She had a massive brain aneurism that destroyed her brain.
While we were in the hospital waiting for news, I, naturally, started to quiz the doctors. They were, understandably, recalcitrant to provide too much detail.
After I continued to persist with my questioning, one young doctor took me aside. He quietly inquired if I was in the medical profession. Once I had convinced him that I was not a doctor, he relaxed and became much more obliging.
How to live well with Multiple Sclerosis
As I sit down to compose this blog post, I am 62 years old (nearly) and I have had Multiple Sclerosis for over 25 years.
These facts are neither remarkable nor pertinent. My mother is 84 years old and she has had MS since her late thirties. She is still active and goes out for a walk every day.
It is possible to live well with Multiple Sclerosis if you treat the disease with the respect it demands?
I have become social friends with a number of MSers on Twitter. Several of these Twitter friends have had MS for many more years than I have.
The reason for raising these topics is that I believe it is possible to live well with MS. If you have been diagnosed with MS, you will be looking for some assurance that your life is not going to end imminently.
I attempted to address this scenario, some years ago, with a recent diagnosis post. I must have written this shortly after my own diagnosis.
The Wahls Protocol
Earlier in this post. I made reference to my Twitter friends.It was one of these friends, who suggested that I should look into The Wahls Protocol. I did and I am so glad that I heeded her advice.
Dr. Terry Wahls is a doctor who has, herself, experienced multiple sclerosis. She has done a lot of research and devised her revolutionary eating plan to overcome MS.
Her book taught me a great deal about chronic disease and a surprising amount about my own body.
I would urge you to get yourself a copy of The Wahl Protocol because it may turn your life around. The book definitely helped me understand and devise a battle-plan to contend with, Multiple Sclerosis.
Even if you choose not to buy the book. Check your local library to see if they have a copy.
If they do, borrow it, read it, understand it. This could be the most important thing you do in your fight against MS.
Learn something NEW to live well with Multiple Sclerosis
Aw, come on. I left school years ago and I am done with learning! The truth is, we are all learning, every day in life. We may not be aware of it. But, every day is different from the last and we must learn how to deal with that.
The Alzheimer’s Society has a very interesting article on Brain Training and Dementia which corroborates my belief that learning something new can improve our cognitive abilities.
Multiple Sclerosis IS a mental illness which is aptly demonstrated by the brain fog many of us endure. In the early days of MS, you may experience brain fog as a mild annoyance. But, it is indicative of something far more sinister happening in your brain.
Slow the Cognitive Decline
However, you can minimise the effects of cognitive decline if you learn a new skill. Learning to do something you have never done before energises parts of your brain that may have lain dormant for years.
It does not matter what you learn. What is important, is that it should be something you have never done before. The more work you have to do, to learn this new skill, the more new connections will be made in your brain.
If you don’t use it you lose it. Is an old adage that is terrifyingly apt when made in reference to your brain.
My own new challenge has been to learn to speak Spanish. But, you can choose any subject to major in. The bigger the challenge the greater the potential reward.
I practise sparking Spanish every day. This is something I have done for three years. I am not a fluent Spanish speaker. But, my mind is clearer, my thinking is sharper. I regard this exercise as a resounding success.
And, who knows, if I am able to retire to Spain, I may even be able to communicate when I get there.
Learn to appreciate what you have
Do you mean I should be grateful for having Multiple Sclerosis?
Yes, Multiple Sclerosis or MS is a horrible disease. But, there are countless horrible diseases that you might have contracted. MS is not the worst thing that could have happened to you.
In most cases, MS is not fatal. Multiple Sclerosis is not the end of life as we know it. Even in terms of MS, there will be people who are worse than you.
However, MS means that you are going to have to make some serious changes to your lifestyle if you want to live well with Multiple Sclerosis.
Furthermore, it is possible to be happy with MS. Being cheerful in the face of adversity, is one of the most important traits you must engender.
Keeping busy is another important aspect. Your day needs to be filled with meaning. You must look forward to getting out of bed every morning.
I fully understand that MS can make this very difficult.
But, you are a fighter. You need to be a fighter. We cannot let MS rule our future prospects.
For example, I have just started a new business venture in the shape of foodfunrecipes.com. This is my new food blog. And it will benefit me and my MS in many ways.
- Sharpen my mind, by learning how to be a blog expert
- Improve my cognitive ability by undergoing new training
- Appreciate the full nutritional value of food
- Relearn to cook exceptional food
I have been a blogger for many years. But, if truth be told. I have not been a very good blogger.
However, I intend to become an expert food blogger. This is going to take a lot of work. I need to learn a huge amount about food blogging.
I need to design a new WordPress blog from the ground up and I need to go back to school.
As you may have already gathered. Food is an important part of my life.
Good food is essential for feeding our mitochondria and learning to appreciate good food is an excellent excuse for travelling to foreign parts to sample the fare.
Central to the learning process is foodbloggerpro.com who run a food blogging e-course I can heartily recommend.
I am not happy with having Multiple Sclerosis. But, I am content with my lot. I keep myself busy and I am learning how to live with MS, every day.