I seem to tell people with a cup of coffee in my hand. It’s not my intent, but I guess it is a thing to hold on to.
There isn’t much these days.
I phone people, I try and get to them in person when I can. And sometimes I can’t.
So, it’s been my home office, a hotel room, the other morning from the Starbucks in the Edmonton Airport. A few times in person.
I was diagnosed with relapsing-remitting MS last Friday.
It was a done deal. I had already pulled a copy of the MRI, reading the last line of the radiologists report that said “findings suggest clinical diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis”. I stared at that line in my living room and then went and packed my suitcase for a work trip. The diagnosis last Friday was a foregone conclusion anyway.
I tell people and God bless each and every one of them, they ask what they can do.
And I don’t know.
And they tell me that I am smart and brave and I can beat this and they tell me that I am so strong.
And then I know what they can do, what I need. I know what they expect – my usual optimism and pragmatism and ‘can do’ attitude. Perhaps they expect me to be devastated, lost, confused and frightened. I have been all of those things at turns.
What I am – mostly – is angry.
Filled with white hot rage.
Is it not enough, I wonder, that I had two miserable and dysfunctional parents and learned to find my way to normal from that? Is it not enough that my son died in my arms? Is it not enough that I couldn’t have another child?
Why is it always me? Why do I always seem to have these things happen to me? What the hell did I ever do to deserve this anyway?
I try to look on the bright side, to reconcile this against the good marriage and great partner that is Mr. Spit, against the wonderful home, the great job, the great friends . . . .
And I just can’t.
I’m still so angry. And what I most want is to understand why the universe can’t go and pick on someone else. I want to understand why someone else can’t take their turn as the universe’s punching ball.
***Please – I’m sure that you know someone who is living and doing fine with MS. Maybe it’s you. And yes, I’ve read about the liberation therapy, about vitamin D, about yoga. I really don’t need a cheer leader today and I really don’t need suggestions on how to manage this disease. Right now I’m working at a job I love, in a home I love, contemplating the real possibility that I will have to leave my job and I will have to sell my home because it’s not accessible. There is nothing about this disease that doesn’t suck. I don’t need to hear that I’m strong or tough.