When I decided to start this blog, it was solely to chronicle my adventures during the next 12 months. Why I chose to do these adventures wasn’t to be a big part of it, and I didn’t want to bore everyone with why I have this bucket list.
Yesterday, however, I received some news that shook me to the core. One of my oldest friends here in Atlanta died suddenly. He had been battling melanoma, but I don’t think anyone was prepared for him to go so suddenly.
It brought into sharp focus how precious this gift of life is to us all. We are lucky every day that we are on this earth, and the idea that it could all go away suddenly makes you want to squeeze every last drop out of it.
About 4 months ago I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. This was definitely a life changing moment, and everyday has been an exercise in learning what my “new normal” is. From now on, it will be normal for me to have to take nerve blockers daily for pain that make me sleepy and cognitively fuzzy. It is normal for me to jab myself with a needle once a week with medicine to keep me from having another exacerbation of MS. It’s normal for me to open a new doctor’s bill every time I get the mail. And it’s normal for me to have that niggling fear in the back of my brain that while my MS is manageable now, one day it might not be.
Also, I’m re-learning what I can and can’t do physically because of the fatigue associated with MS. That was the real reason behind this list. I wanted to make sure that everyday the list of things I “can’t” do shrinks, and the list of things I “can” do grows and becomes a list of things I have done.
This year is the year for me to push the limits and discover what the next “New Normal” is. I’m looking forward to it.
So, in the spirit of Mr. Keating and Newsies, I shall let 2012 be the year I seize the day!
There is a dear young mother in our church who was diagnosed in the past year with MS. It has been a poignant journey for her so far… they lived in a house with a lot of steps and had to move but there have been so many other things that have changed. I have a few new diagnosis’ that have attached themselves to me in the past year and I have spent waaaay too much time wallowing in self-pity and being practically immobile. Carpe Diem, indeed!