Living, not just


Do you ever feel like you’re counting down the days until something is over, hoping for a positive change or gritting your teeth until the bad spell passes?

I’ve caught myself being exactly like that. And I can’t remember when it started. Just days strung together by relief I got through them. By a ‘things have to get better soon’ mentality. The problem with having something that is supposed to be relapsing/remitting is that you become a survivor hoping for things to pass. ‘They’ have decided to stop calling it that now because in fact, over time, you don’t see a clear recovery after a bad patch. It’s just all quite bad or very bad.

If you find yourself wishing for your life circumstances to change and never truly see that happen then you’re just surviving like me. I remember seeing other babies cutting teeth, walking or potty training before my baby and wishing that would hurry up and happen for them too. But then, when they’re managing everything by themselves you long for the days when they needed you more.

This past week I have decided to walk badly in public, lean against everything and just keep going. Because I want to make the most of my current situation. Someone with MS herself once asked me, ‘do you let it stop you?’ Yes, sadly I do.

I watched a rather stoical woman making her way round the shop where she worked as if limping was a fact of life, not an impediment. Covering ground doesn’t have to look easy or graceful. I wonder if I stopped trying to look like everyone else all the time I would achieve more. Looking normal is exhausting. Ask any paralympian if they got their medal by hiding.

There are many ways to pass through life: hoping, wishing, hankering or reminiscing. None of those help with the now. Life is full of ongoing goodness, whatever we’re enduring, however we feel. Faith can keep us. Family can hold us. Good friends can stick by us. Nature can surprise us every day.

I watched a little ladybird do circuits around a saucer on the window sill yesterday and it made me smile How about you find something today, even a tiny thing, to remind you that you are not just counting down the days. You are living them.

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