My wife’s brain has not had any activity in about five years. Which is awesome.


My wife’s brain has not had any activity in about five years. Which is awesome.

I’ll admit that, when we started dating, I didn’t really know what Multiple Sclerosis meant. I barely knew what it was, but had no clue why it was “Multiple Sclerosis.” For those like me, “sclerosis” is an abnormal hardening of tissue, basically scar tissue. Multiple, obviously, just means more than one. Traditionally, if you have one bit of abnormally hard tissue in your nervous system, that’s bad, but that’s all it is. You get a second one – boom, that’s MS. (Today, they’re quicker to consider the possibility of MS even at the first sighting.)

The sclerosis are referred to as lesions, and the formation of new lesions is referred to as activity. So MS is about the only situation where it’s good to say there’s no activity in someone’s brain.

Rebecca had an MRI Monday, and the results came back – no new activity since the last MRI, and none for almost five years.

I share this because a friend contacted me earlier today to ask about her experience; his doctor suspects he may have MS. I share this to say there is hope. I share this because not that many years ago, five years without activity would have been a miracle. I share this to say that the war against MS is being fought, and it is being won. I share to say, keep fighting.

MS Awareness Month 2018: Blessings and Monsters


March is Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month.
 
Last year, Rebecca and I really couldn’t help but promote MS awareness when we spent the better part of a week in Cullman so she could receive what may be her final MS treatment. You take off that long, and folks are inevitably going to be aware.
 
MS Awareness has become a different sort of thing for us over the past year since that treatment. Our awareness of Rebecca’s relationship with MS has evolved in that time. Free of some of the worst of it, and gradually and tentatively letting go of some of the fear of what tomorrow could be like, I think we’re both a little more of the realities of day-to-day post-Lemtrada life with MS. There have been days where it’s so obvious that the progress since last March is incredible. There have been days where it’s obvious that an indefinite treatment is not the same thing as a cure. Rebecca has always amazed me at how she perseveres; it’s easy for someone to not know what she deals with. I admire her so much, and have such a deep respect for her strength.
 
Without question, though, MS Awareness for us over the past year has included a deep-seated awareness of how incredibly blessed we are – to live in the time we do, to have the resources we do, to have the doctor we do, to have the community we do. Take any of those things away, and life could be very different.
 
One member of that community is Amy Kibbey, who has shared with Rebecca experiences from her own battle. I’m grateful to her (and so many others) for that, but I also really respect her efforts to share the blessings we experience with others.
 
Rebecca has been a beneficiary of the National MS Society, an organization that Amy supports each year through Walk MS. Here is a link to how you can support her Walk. The fight against MS is a fight which can be won and is being won. The Walk, and the Society, really do make a difference.
 
I’m not asking people to give. I really believe these battles are fought best by passionate people. Everybody has a battle. MS may not have touched your life. For you, the monster facing you or your family may be diabetes or cancer or any number of others. It so, I’m not asking you to fight MS, and don’t judge you for not. Fight your monster. Fight hard.
 
But I did want you to have Awareness.