So, how does one end a week of posting about a life with multiple sclerosis? That’s the question I have been asking myself all week. To answer this, I thought back to why I stepped out to become public about my MS and why I posted this week.
Every person has some struggle that she/he is dealing with, or they will in the future. Those struggles often lead to questioning “Why me?” Those struggles often lead to pain which can be both debilitating and contagious.
For whatever reason, I am blessed to be engineered to want to fight this. The question was never, “Why me?” It was always, “Why not me? What makes me so special that I deserve a life free of pain, struggle, or challenges? OK, now how am I going to fight this – for me, my family, my friends, and my community?” That’s why I stepped out 2.5 years ago. That’s why I posted this week. My intent has been to show a more balanced view of what MS is for me (and others?). I was exhausted seeing only the negative side of MS. I hope I showed an honest point of view. Life is neither normal nor abnormal. It is not binary of easy or hard.
I hope I never came across as a victim because I have never viewed this in that manner. In many ways, my feelings are the exact opposite. MS has given me new context and perspective. It has given me an opportunity to help others.
It has instilled an internal fire to love every moment and the people in my life.
#ThisIsMS (Pic is from a rock pile where I first publicly stated I had MS. It’s written on a rock down there… somewhere amongst all the other secrets and proclamations.)
A few weeks ago, I fell while running. It was a nasty fall and worse than I thought. I didn’t fall on the hills. I fell on the flat. It could have been MS. It could have been a root. It could have been dumb luck.
After dealing with pain for 2 weeks, I decided to see my team over at @bluetailmedical. I have a torn right meniscus and have been running on it for weeks.
Yesterday, they did BMAC on the meniscus. This involves taking my blood and harvesting both fat and bone marrow. That is then injected in the site to rapidly repair it. I am expected to be back to half strength in one week and full strength within 2 weeks.
Falling is part of MS. Pain is part of MS. It matters more how I get up and accept a constantly changing new normal. Then, put one step in front of the other. Even if it’s a bit of a hobble.
Oh, make no doubt… Leadville 2020 is absolutely on!
Husband, father, volunteer, and CEO. These are a few of the roles that define me. My MS is not one of them. #ThisIsMS
I don’t want to give the impression that MS is easy for me or anyone. I am blessed & can deal with most of the challenges, including the pain. Sometimes, it rears its head in ways that impact me. But, it’s the commitment to keep fighting that matters most.
These pics are from when MS won a battle. My hand was when my brain turned off for a half second. I was on a treadmill running 5:20 pace. The others are from a fall a few weeks ago. I didn’t fall on the hills. It was a flat trail section.
In both situations and others, I got back up. Today and this moment are gifts. They are blessings. I might be in pain, but I choose to respect and love this moment. And I fight for the next second, the next minute, and the next day.
#ThisIsMS but this is me fighting!
Today was my 200th class at OrangeTheory Fitness. I started 16 months ago to supplement my running & personal trainer. It has forced me to run faster than I usually like. (AO – 11.5+) #ThisIsMS
As part of my treatment, I incur weekly injections. How funny? I once tore apart a treatment room at a doctor’s office when I was a kid because the nurse tried to give me a shot. Today, it’s just part of the process to fight MS. #ThisIsMS
Today is the start of MS Awareness Week.
It was a hard decision to become public about having MS for numerous reasons. The biggest was that I wasn’t being authentic. I wasn’t honoring our family mission statement, and I needed to own that.
I stepped out to help those who also have MS and those who have given up against the struggles in their lives. I was exhausted from seeing all the bad stories of those with MS. It didn’t tell the full story. It didn’t tell how hard they fought. I didn’t see enough stories about those who are fighting everyday.
Sometimes we fall down (figuratively and literally), but sometimes we succeed… and succeed just because we are strong enough to fight.
Today’s post is from the end of Leadville 2018. A guy with MS who could have walking stripped from him fought for nearly 30 hours to run 100 miles.
Oh, I am headed back again this year. Because… #thisisms