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Saturday, May 3, 2008

Journal 5/03

Journal 5/03/08 Lessons, blessings and prayers

Yesterday was a great day for me. Matt and I got to spend an hour just marveling and loving all over each other. I also felt better all day long. I even went out to eat with friends. I felt excellent when I went to bed.

The middle of the night was the hard part. I managed to sleep until about 3:30 and then I awoke and felt burning hot. I started to feel like I needed to puke but fought the urge. I finally got up and used the restroom but I was so depleted by the effort that I just had to fall back into bed. I awoke Matt at 4:30, feeling desperate. He took my temperature and put a cold compress on my forehead. He held my hand and comforted me until I felt ok again and the nausea past.

Matt also literally saved my butt this morning. I had a sudden attack of blurred vision and vertigo and so I awoke him again. Despite his exhaustion, he got right up and went downstairs to find me a quick snack. He then made me fresh, hot pancakes as well. By the time I ate the food he provided, I was feeling much better. Now I am drained but very optimistic about my prognosis for the day. My vision has cleared and my vertigo is quickly receding again. The sun is shining too! Matt’s going to get me a chaise right now and my friend Leah is going to the farmer’s market to procure us some organic produce. Things are really looking up.

Last night, while I lay awake fearing my reaction to the vertigo, I had ample time for more thought. I cried a little about the pain in my head and about how hard it can be to move from Ms. “overachiever” to half-handicapped at times but mostly I thought about my dreams, blessings and prayers.

Now, I am not a religious person but I do aspire to become a spiritually elevated individual. I find that having MS has really deepened my spiritual resolves. I am more resolved than ever in my determination to meditate well and mindfully. I am more resolved not to let the little things bug me. When I remember to close my eyes and breathe slowly and deeply, I am learning to calm my anxieties. I can’t believe I am saying this but I find I am even more patient with others and I’m usually an agitated, mega-bitch critic.

I am most blessed to have found some new, meaningful connections. I am even more blessed by some of the deeper ways I am reconnecting with members of my family and even with people I have often despised. The faults in others bother me less now. I am also learning that my own faults may seem more glaring to me than they do to others. People keep praising my positive attitude and my strength. I find this surprising because I have felt a lot of fear, immaturity and weakness in myself throughout my life and operate under the general, paranoid assumption that I must drive people nuts. I have also always felt like the family basket case. I have often thought that everyone is just waiting for me to drop the ball and come unglued. I guess maybe I was wrong.

I feel new peace with my parents now too. For many years I was nearly estranged from my dad and we only reconnected in the last year. I know that some of my family is still upset with him but I am just finding that I can accept him for who he is (bizarre, or not). I feel so grateful that he actually came to my house to see me twice in two weeks (he’s never visited me before). He came two days after I was diagnosed to see me and I could tell he already was thinking about ways to help me and Matt. When he left, I cried because I felt like he really accepts me for what and who I am now. I don’t think he sees me as flawed at all.

My mom came and visited a few months ago as well (before I was diagnosed). Matt has been telling me for years that I should get over the issues I have with my mom. Well, even before I knew about the MS, I finally did. I really believed that my mother thought I was a bad seed, an explosion of unrestrained emotion and imbalance. I remember her yelling a lot when I was a kid. I remember her doing all the disciplining and managing of my life. I thought she would never stick up for me in front of my dad. I thought she hated my bad skin, unruly hair and temper tantrums. I have always felt so judged and criticized by her. Now, I wonder, was this all in my own head?

When my mother visited she had nothing but nice, encouraging and complimentary things to say about me and Matt. She had planned a special trip to Europe this spring and when she learned I had MS, she offered to skip the trip and come home. I told her to go and to take lots of pictures and call often. She is doing just that. She gives me comfort, hope and peace every time she calls. She keeps saying beautiful things to me. This makes me so elated. My mom also accepts me for who I am. She also seems satisfied with who I am now and with the person I am becoming. I am blessed.

The kindness of friends, family and even people who hardly know us almost overwhelming. I wake up every day and immediately remember that I have MS. Sometimes I cry a little and cuddle a “fairy bear” from my mother in law and then I feel better and I can just get back to living and healing. I never thought I would write about prayers and blessings of all things but here I am. Wow!

My prayer is not to one entity. My prayer is very personal. I am praying that my own strength and healing will help heal the other people in my life who need it.

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