During my treatment yesterday, there was a man sitting next to me that I started talking to. The conversation started after he had to take a phone call and felt bad that he thought he was disrupting his neighbor. He apologize for the call and explained his brother-in-law was going in for triple bypass surgery today. He was sitting next to me getting Chemotherapy. I politely explain no need for apologies, I totally understood . From there we started talking. It turns out about four years ago he had prostate cancer. Over the summer he went for his routine check up at his doctor and his numbers were too high. A scan revealed he had nodules in his lower half is a lung. In March of 2016 his father died and on New Years Eve his mother died. I am telling you this sad story because the man sitting next to me still smiled. Not only did he smile, he was sure that the cancer, like the prostate cancer, would be complexly fine. So far all other tests since the nodule removal agree with his thinking. He was sure his brother-in-laws surgery would go smoothly. His parents death, he talked with sadness, but also with the understanding death happens. I’m sitting next to him getting my Rituxan infusion that will cause some tiredness, maybe a few aches but compared to chemotherapy it’s not even in the same ball park. It just puts the whole thing into a realistic view point.
See the chance of multiple sclerosis actually causing death is very, very rare. Does it have other issues, absolutely. Does it make for a challenging life for some people, absolutely. Does it affect quality of life for some people, absolutely. However mostly we adapt, accommodate, adjust, revise, review, and survive. I’ve told the story in the past of when I was first diagnosed http://www.multipleexperiences.org/2016/07/15/the-day-i-found-out-i-had-multiple-sclerosis/. This man sitting next to me reminded me that as bad as it is, it’s the attitude that makes the difference. This is the hand I was dealt. I can live in fear and blame be unhappy. I can complain and have very valid things to complain about, and they are completely valid. Multiple sclerosis is not fun, it’s challenging, it’s heartbreaking at times and it can be scary. However everyday I wake up and I have an opportunity to make it a good day or bad day mentally if not physically. That part is 100% in my control. I’m here and my prognosis on survival with multiple sclerosis is nearly 99%. That is something to be very thankful for and something to put in your prayers for others who don’t have those percentages. This wonderful man sitting next to me yesterday gave me a gift and he was in my thoughts and prayers this morning. I hope he heals as his certainty suggests and more I hope his positive thoughts never waiver. He was truly a remarkable man.