15 Secrets of People Affected by Multiple Sclerosis

1. “It’s a disease most people wouldn’t recognize.”

2. “For me, MS means facing the unknown every day, wondering and worrying if a new feeling or sensation is a normal thing or an MS thing. I don’t want this disease to run my life.”

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3. “MS can go undiagnosed/misdiagnosed. If it seems someone you love is quietly enduring symptoms, please encourage them to speak up.” 

4. “So far, the embarrassment has been tough. Embarrassment when I’ve wet myself, when I fall over, when I can’t participate due to the wheelchair not fitting wherever I need to go, when I need help taking care of my own baby.”

5. “It’s not the end of the world! There are lots of things people with MS can do to improve their health through diet and lifestyle choices.”

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6. “I wish people understood, not just for MS but in every situation in life — if I did not ask for help, don’t! That’s interfering, not helping. I stumble a lot, my balance sucks; adding another person’s unpredictable movement by holding my arm makes it way worse. If, if, I need help, I will ask.”

7. “Every single person with MS has his or her personal combination of symptoms. It depends on where the inflicted parts of the brain and/or spinal cord are situated. So if you ask people with MS about it, you will get a huge variety of answers… When you deal with someone having MS, ask questions about how he or she is today or right now. Never pity him or her, just deal with him or her naturally, like you would with anybody else.”

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8. “The wobble only adds to my swagger.” — Jason, from Nadine Friedman-Roberts’ photo series, “Whisky, Waterfalls, and a Radio Preacher.”

9. “Every setback and every challenge can make it feel like we’re back at square one, butI constantly remind myself to make the choice to thrive.”

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10. “[MS is my] frenemy because, in hindsight, there are lessons I wouldn’t have learned without [it] entering my life.”

11. “I may be walking slower, but I’m racing.”

12. “A life with multiple sclerosis is not a death sentence.”

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13. “No, I’m not resting. I’m living a full life within the abilities I have. Having multiple sclerosis is not within my power, but what is within my power is refusing to let MS gain the upper hand.”

14. “I am not multiple sclerosis, and even with it, I can accomplish so much.”

15. “I can choose to be miserable, or I can choose to do something good with this.”

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