Category Archives: MS Gratitude

100 MS Episodes

Multiple Sclerosis Comedy

Stop the presses!

Call Willard Scott!

Light the candles!

I’m turning 100 today!

And believe me; I have the aches, the pains, the pills and the posts to prove it!

Perhaps you’re confused. While MS often makes me feel 100, you are thinking to yourself, she can’t really be THAT old, can she? If so, the broad looks pretty good; she doesn’t look a day over 91.

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Ahh, thank you for the encouragement friends! Allow me to be more specific. Today marks my 100th blog post making my blog 100!!!

Who’d have thunk it-that this little blog I started over three years ago would live to be 100? For you fact checkers, history buffs, and my future Wikipedia biographer, (so hoping to get a Wikipedia biography someday-that’s how you know you’ve made it,) the first blog posting was on 11/27/11. The number 100 includes 15 blogs that I wrote for the website MSRelief. com between May of 2012 and May of 2013.

I was excited to reach 100, thinking that it was a big deal. I was reminded of TV commercials for popular sitcoms that announce “our 100th episode airs on Tuesday!” It seemed fitting. Perhaps my little blog is like a written MS sitcom.

Being competitive, I decided to compare my number of episodes with some of my favorite sitcoms. I was crushed to learn that Modern Family has reached 115. They started 2 years before me but still.

 

I thought I would go back in history to feel better. Laverne and Shirley had 178- even more depressing!

I researched further and discovered that Gilligan’s Island only had 98 episodes.

Phew, that makes me feel better. Instead of Gilligan, I have multiple sclerosis in this wacky comedy. According to Wikipedia-my go to website for factual research- comedy means work generally intended to be humorous or to amuse by inducing laughter.

Gotcha Gilligan!

 

Gunning for you Laverne!

When I started this MS humor blog foray, a dear friend and fellow writer said “you know you’ll run out of material after a while.” But oh, how she underestimated multiple sclerosis. Seems MS likes to give me A LOT to work with.

In the thirty months since I began the yvonnedesousa.com blog (I guess I really should give it a better name-too bad How I Met Your Mother is already taken,) I have whined- Feelin Hot, Hot, Hot, Call Me Oscar, pined-Taffy Summer, Too Many Steves and learned some silly songs- I Feel Icky, 12 Days of Christmas MS Style.

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Speaking of Christmas, this blog has celebrated the holidays-What Do MS and Christmas Have in Common, Resolve This, When MS and Lent Collide and given advice- 10 Things to Never Say to Someone with MS and Major Radioactive Insanity.

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You, dear readers, have watched me work out- Me and My Wii, Flipnastics, and MS Extreme Sports and helped me improve my diet-Kale the New Frontier, Once Bitten, and Floored by Broccoli, Tricked by a Kid.

You’ve watched me survive some vicious storms- Stormy Sleepy Sandy and Could Be Minutes, Could Be Days and helped me clean up- Tumble Bunnies, Mr. Clean is the Man for Me.

You were there for me when I was forced to say goodbye- Just Not Feeling It and A Shower Story and you read along while I shared my deepest, darkest neurosis-This MS Moment is Brought to you by the Letters ‘F’ and ‘U’ and the Number ‘2’ and It’s On My List.

When I went on crazy adventures, you were there to laugh at me- Scooter Stalker and Did You Hear the One about the One MSer who Drove the Other MSer to the Neurologist.

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We lamented the strangest of the strange when it comes to MS symptoms-All Aboard, MS Counts, MS Shuffle and Shake.

And together we enjoyed the music of the best band in the world- Like an MS Rolling Stone and MS Sucks.

Through it all, I’ve done my best to provide you, friends, with sage and hard earned wisdom- Stupid MS, Invisible Idiocy and MS is a Conundrum.

Wow, remembering all of this is making me super tired. Then again, I get super tired just taking off my shoes.

The point is, this 100th blog post calls for a celebration!

And I wanted to share this celebration with all of you to thank you for your awesome support.

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Now, please, no gifts required. Yes, I know how generous you are but it’s enough of a gift for me to know that there are people as wonderful as yourselves who read these little notes I post once a week.

But, if you happen to be one of those folks who are so generous that you bring a gift to the “No gifts please” events, far be it from me to rob you of that special joy. While I can always use alcohol swabs, that is not very exciting.

An exciting gift for me would be for you to read my new book MS Madness! A “Giggle More, Cry Less” Story of Multiple Sclerosis and if you enjoy it, tell all your friends and ask them to tell all of their friends!

That would be a super duper 100th Episode gift!

Thank you and I’ll be thinking of all of you when I blow out the candles Gilligan is lighting for my blog right now..

 

ID-10041779Image courtesy of Stuart Miles/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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Image courtesy of digitalart/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

Lots and Lots of March Stuff

Happy first week of March everyone!

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So much to share with you friends!

First up, and in no particular order, other than the order that I finally learned how to post this badge on my blog and am afraid to move it around for fear of losing it, order-  my blog was nominated a top MS Blog by Healthline!!!

I didn’t even know I was nominated!

Thank you to whoever nominated and voted for my blog!

And to be honest, I didn’t know much about this website either.  So now I’ve checked it out, love it, and have added it to my website.   Talk about MS awareness!

 

Speaking of which, Happy National MS Awareness Month!

Next up, have you gotten a chance to order my book, MS Madness! A “Giggle More, Cry Less” Story of Multiple Sclerosis yet?  If you would like too and would also like to help out an amazing organization, let me tell of an exciting opportunity.

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My book is listed in the Race to Erase MS online store and if you purchase through their store during the month of March,  50% of the proceeds go to the Race to Erase MS campaign.

I’m so excited to be working with this amazing organization!   Here is the link if you would like to take a look-

Race to Erase MS Online Store/MS Madness!

So the first week of March was filled with bad news, one fall-stupid bath tub, Ash Wednesday, my first book signing, good news, lots more good news-see above and many, many hours of  pondering all of the above.  Thus, I unfortunately do not have a new blog for you today.

 

BUT, as Ash Wednesday marks the start of Lent, I thought I would repeat last year’s Lenten blog.    I promise a new post next Friday.

Have a great week friends!

 

When Multiple Sclerosis and Lent Collide

Adding God to the MS balance beam

Due to Lent, this blog has a spiritual tint to it. I hope though, that even my non-believing friends will enjoy it from the aspect of how it incorporates another one of the elements of living with multiple sclerosis.

And really, how can you not believe in a higher power? I mean, God is freaking awesome! The sun, the moon, the Earth, the oceans and on the eighth day he created the Rolling Stones! How can you not love the creator of all that!!

For me, Jesus is my God. Only someone that cool would be capable of creating Keith Richards and keeping him around past his over ten lives thus far. But no matter what you believe dear readers, I wish you great health and many, many laughs always….

 

I think I messed up the Lent thing. As a Christian, I was excited about the approach of this time of year. We use this time to grow closer to God with prayer, almsgiving (does trying to make people laugh count as almsgiving?) and fasting.

My goal was to take advantage of this opportunity. I saved change to put into the little cardboard box that was our church’s mission project to support a local mission. I even put in quarters. When it was time to turn the box in and it seemed a little light, I even took some change out of another jar where I had been saving for my Lions Club.

Speaking of my Lion’s Club, I also fed the crew of a local Habitat for Humanity project in our club’s name. I didn’t have time to get fellow Lion’s to help me but that was ok as it was supposed to be a small crew.

The numbers increased however and thus it was that my fatigued MS self was slapping together ham and cheese on a windy morning for hungry construction workers. And, unfortunately, as far as I could tell, not a one of them was single! Not that that had anything to do with why I was there, it was about almsgiving of course.

 

When two fellow Lions asked my tired self to help them clean the God given beach, I did put a stop to that. Really, how much almsgiving can you do???

For the prayer portion of Lent, I obtained many books about Jesus and set to grow in my relationship with Him. It worked; I have enjoyed a lot of what I read.

But here is where MS screwed me up. My brain takes much longer to process information. So, while I was reading all of these great spiritual works, I was taking up a ton of time in my already pretty crowded with exhaustion, day. That left no time for the things I should be doing for my general health.

Suffice to say, what I wound up unintentionally giving up for Lent, was working out with my Wii Fit. Officially, I gave up casual reading for Lent in favor of more involved spiritual material and was planning on curbing my sweet tooth. But before I realized it, I was fasting on getting exercise and I am not sure that counts.

 

With MS there is so much you should do and so little energy to do it in. With Lent, there was so much I wanted to do and only forty days to do it in. Ok, technically, you don’t have to stop the prayer, almsgiving, fasting routine just because Easter arrives, but having a time table sure helps to keep you focused.

That is when I figured out where I went wrong. Focus is the key word.

There are always going to be more things I want to do and more things I have to do and I will always have to walk this MS balance beam of energy supply. Some days I may do it well, other days not so much.

But if I put God first, maybe I won’t have to balance Him with other things. Not even with MS.

 

Maybe Jesus IS the balance beam of energy. With Him first in my world, everything else will fall into place, even my Wii Fit, after it gets over being mad at me. Perhaps I will bring it an Easter basket….

Here is the other thing I learned, as it says in scripture, “it’s never to late to start all over again.”

 

Wait, maybe that isn’t scripture, maybe that’s Steppenwolf. I will have to check my notes. I have also really been into 70’s music lately.

The point is, everyday you just have to give life your best shot. Wait, shot is not the right word. Jesus is all about peace and love, not violence-no shooting…

Ok, let me try a third way. We are humans and as humans we are total screw ups. But screwing up isn’t always bad if we can learn from our mistakes and keep our focus on what is right and what is good for us.

And, no matter how hard you try, you can’t use Lent as an excuse for not exercising!

 

 

 

Auld Lang Syne Means “Old and Sigh….”

An MS’er tackles a new year and offers a contest update

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Happy days after the holidays friends, or, as I like to call them, the “ok to have Christmas cookies for breakfast time as you have so many to eat in order not to offend the people who gave them to you and you will start a health kick in the New Year anyway” week…

If you are at all like me, your holiday of choice was filled with food, family and friends and all of them are making you sluggish and nostalgic in the aftermath. Today my brain is foggier than usual and foggier then the fog outside as I ponder all things emotional, old and new.

 

For example, I have a friend having a birthday this week and she is turning 45. How on Earth is that possible?

Don’t get me wrong, I have friends of all ages and a true friend is not determined by how old they are. But this friend is in my same age bracket and if she is turning 45, what does that say about me?

I shiver at the thought!

The good news is that even stuffed with roast beast, potatoes, baked goods and chocolate, I got on the scale and discovered that I weigh 6 lbs less than I did at this time last year-woohoo!

 

Since my goal last year was to lose 20lbs by my next neurologist appointment (that was this past July and who’s to say that I didn’t lose it?) and I have had another appointment since then and that was three months ago and my goal had nothing to do with follow up appointments, I am considering this a success!

And since last year I went on a family trip where I lost six lbs chasing a 21 month old and his baby brother, and this year their ages are now 2.9 months and 17 months, my plan was to lose 12 lbs chasing both of them. Hey, you do math your way and I will do it mine.

The plan did not work however as I only lost 1 lb on the trip this year proving of course, that I still suck at math.

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Sitting down with a plate of holiday treats I decided to take stock of the year by looking over some former blogs. Turns out, when I go below the bare bones of the musings throughout the year, I discovered that it was a bit of a tough one.

There was a blizzard, ridiculous heat and humidity, bug infestations, being forced to move during the heat and humidity and bug infestations, two unexpected deaths of two dear friends, and a couple of falls.

Note- I only document one fall in my blogs this past year, a fall where Fido, my pet portable ac tripped me. The second fall happened on my recent trip where I got my first black eye, a real shiner. But man, you should have seen the sidewalk!

Looking over the blogs though, I also found some great stuff.

 

I got to see the Rolling Stones perform live which was huge because that could be the last time they perform live together again.

Yes, I did say that the previous six or seven times I have seen them live but you just never know.

I was able to keep my sense of humor through most of the bad, hopefully helping all of you giggle as I kept from going crazy by sharing some of the bad with you.

And my year was filed with wonderful and fun help from dear family and friends, for which I am super grateful.

So the good of the year outweighed the bad. And maybe the bad of 2013 will help ease some of the potential bad of 2014, making 2014 a total kick butt year!

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For example, while the move came at the worst time possible and I miss my little house, when the bugs and pollen and heat hit this spring, I will be in a new rental better able to handle it and complete with a real ac.

Don’t worry Fido fans, I will keep him around too if for no other reason than that he has stayed super loyal, despite the pushing incident.

And while my ‘get fit’ plan continues to be a work in progress (I did refer to it as baby steps though this baby is about to enter high school I have been working on this so long,) I have dropped 12 lbs and more importantly, adopted some healthier habits. All the better to move forward with in 2014.

So what if the end 2013 means we are all one year older, including my birthday friend. Let’s all give a collective sigh at this knowledge.

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BUT, let’s use that knowledge to work even harder to have a much improved 2014. I know I plan on it!

Happy Birthday dear, thrilled that you are older than me, friend!

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And Happy New Year to everyone!

PS One of the things that took a lot of work in 2013 was getting my book ready for publication. Now I can use 2014 to reap the rewards of its release and count all the huge book sales- hopefully!

Please mark on your calendars that MS Madness: A “Giggle More, Cry Less” Story of Multiple Sclerosis will be out in February!

In anticipation of its release, I can now announce the December contest winner! It is Cindy from Indiana. Her response to the question of what two quotes do I open MS Madness with were the first and most accurate. The quotes are-

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“A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.” Proverbs 17:22 NIV

And,

“A smile relieves a heart that grieves…” Jagger/Richards from Waiting on a Friend

 

Cindy got the exact Proverbs verse and while she did choose the Rolling Stones, she didn’t get the exact quote from them.

Congratulations Cindy! You win a $25 gift card to Amazon and an autographed copy of MS Madness!

Others won a free e-book of MS Madness for their guesses and I will be in touch with them as well.

Thank you all for your support.

There will be one more contest in January which I am not going to tell you about now, mostly because my brain is too fogged to come up with contest details.

But please stay tuned!!!

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Image courtesy of vectorolie/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

Image courtesy of lamnee/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of luigi diamanti/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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Image courtesy of Arvind Balaraman/FreeDigitaalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of luigi diamanti/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

A Few of My Favorite Things

A little MS gratitude just in time for Thanksgiving

 

Hello friends-  this blog is a repeat as I am kind of out of town and thus, a little too out of my mind to come up with a new blog.  At least this repeat has some holiday relevancy.  Even if you don’t like reading repeats, please look to the bottom for a Dancing with the Stars update and a little reminder.

For some reason, I can’t get the above song out of my head even though I have usually found it slightly annoying. It is kind of a Christmas song, although not written as such. Since I love autumn so much that I cherish taking my cool weather holidays one at a time, I’m not sure why this song is hanging around my lesion filled brain.

Perhaps it is because next week is Thanksgiving and the above reminds everyone of what what’s her name from that movie is grateful for. Thus, why isn’t A Few of My Favorite Things thought of as a Thanksgiving song?

 

I have so many things for which to be grateful, that I couldn’t possible name them all or fit them into a song. And trust me, mittens and kittens are not at the top of the list.

Just thinking about Thanksgiving makes me grateful.

For example, if my small family winds up at my place on the holiday then I am super grateful that the local grocery store sells what I like to call ‘turkey in a box’; a complete holiday dinner you can just throw into the oven all prepared and no one is the wiser.

I am grateful for pumpkin pie- how could I have possibly left out pumpkin pie on my prior Pumpkins, Pumpkins Everywhere post?

I am thankful that Thanksgiving is a day where it is perfectly appropriate to eat too much and veg out. It is actually un-American not to do so.

And I am thankful that even the fruits and veggies cooperate on this day and aren’t too obnoxious- think mashed potatoes, stuffing with celery, cranberry sauce, candied yams, pumpkin pie. I know, again with the pumpkin overkill.

 

I am grateful for the knowledge that Black Friday is just a scam of hype and deals that aren’t really deals, thus allowing smug people like me the luxury to stay home, eat too many leftovers and veg out for one more day.

But this is a multiple sclerosis blog and so if I am going to list things that I am grateful for, or a few of my favorite things, I should focus on MS. What could one possibly find to be grateful for about MS?

Nothing really.  Absolutely nothing.

But in thinking about my last few years living with this illness, I did miraculously come up with some things associated with MS to be grateful for.

For example, while I am not thankful to have to give myself shots, I AM very thankful that they seem to be working. And I am thankful for the extra fat cushion I have to soften the shot just a bit. I still HATE doing them though.

 

I am thankful to have a knowledgeable, kind, patient, young, handsome neurologist on my side as I battle MS. I am NOT thankful that he happens to be married but I guess you can’t have everything.

I am grateful that my primary doctor diagnosed my diagnosis quickly without having to do a spinal tap as I have heard they are just horrific. She just had me electrocuted and shot through a tube a couple of times and we were good to go.

These bits of MS gratitude did not seem grateful enough. I started looking over my blog posts for more help and realized that I started this blog over two years ago and it has since grown from a whenever I felt like it post, to a once a month post, to twice a month post and then to a once a week post. (Thank you to multiple sclerosis for continuing to give me enough material to keep this wacky blog going- oh wait- maybe not….)

In my past blogs there were other examples of MS things I had to be thankful for. In the post Stormy, Sleepy Sandy, I talk about my bladder alarm clock screaming at me to get up. I am thankful that the alarm clock part of my bladder is still working. It has been quite a long while since I have had ‘an accident’ and I would like to keep it that way for as long as possible.

 

I am thankful that kale is considered an awesome veggie for MS’er’s as well as the world as a whole, and I can sneak its precious nutrients into my all time favorite comfort food, kale soup- see post Kale, the New Frontier.

I am thankful that due to cognitive difficulties that come from MS, when I do something stupid I have a disease I can totally blame it on (Stupid MS).

While fatigue and clumsiness are constant companions, and I am may not move so gracefully going about my day- No Moves Like Jagger but Smooth Like Montel and Chop Their Happy Little Heads Off posts- I am grateful that I am still moving. Being able to move about without any help is definitely something to be grateful for, even if you do move like a slug most days.

And while an eye exam discovered a new disgusting condition, Oily Tears and All, I am grateful it didn’t show any significant damage as yet to my optic nerve. I will be able to continue reading the numbers on my bedroom scale and the milligrams on my medications going up, up, up a while longer…

And on this sappy holiday of Thanksgiving, I must say I am thankful to God who is the real being responsible for the above. My health, my sense of humor or lack thereof depending on your opinion dear reader, my friends, my family and everything good comes from HIM. Fortunately for me, HE also enjoys a good joke or two. HE absolutely appreciates a rip roaring laugh. I think that may be why he created us in the first place!

 

DWTS Moment- It happened friends, it really happened!  Jack Osbourne made it into the finals of Dancing with the Stars!

It didn’t come easily as it was a difficult week for him.  In a very emotional letter on Facebook, and on the show, Jack discussed his tough week with MS relapses.  He described the many symptoms that attacked that week and how they affected not only him, but people who rely on him, like his dance partner Cheryl Burke.    Cheryl didn’t totally understand but she did her best to stand by her partner  and remind him that “it’s just a dance competition.”

I so admire Jack Osbourne and all that he has done on this reality dance show.  Not because he is famous.  And not because he has MS, but in spite of it.  Jack reminds us of the unexpected ugliness that can it rear it’s head on our fight to follow our dreams, and of the ways we can still succeed by adjusting.  He also reminds the rest of the world that while our world may look pretty, inside it ain’t always so.

And to top it all off, he is a kick butt dancer!  Way to go Jack!

 

I am not posting the voting methods today as I’m not sure if you can vote this week.  Yes, I have watched every season since the show started and so I should have this info down but hey, I have MS.

Friendly Reminder-Only one week left to enter my contest!  Please enter by sending me a message in the contact section of this website and/or by sending a private message to my Facebook page Yvonne desousa.com

 

Next week I will announce the winner/winners and include excerpts of the chapter from my soon to be released book, MS Madness: A “Giggle More, Cry Less” Story of Multiple Sclerosis the answer is based on. Please see my last blog on 11/15 for the contest rules.

Here is the question-

Chapter 19 (Hey MS, Hug This) is one of the more serious chapters of MS Madness and discusses one of the most frustrating aspects of living with multiple sclerosis.  What is that aspect?

Hint- it is not the MS Hug.

A Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving to all!

 

 

Updates, Tidbits, and Smidgets

A multiple sclerosis recap

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Don’t ask me what a smidget is because my foggy brain is too tired to explain it to you. Or, if you want the truth, I have no idea. It just sounded good so I added it to the title.

Speaking of titles, thank you for the title suggestions, comments, words of encouragement and promises to buy my book. For preorders and/or to lock your promise in, just send a blank check to me at the address listed in the contact page. Kidding. I don’t have an address listed in my contact page.

Seriously, I appreciate the support of all of you and that support is what led to me actually publishing my book. But coming up with the title is still stressing me out. It is hard!

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Apparently all of you think so to because I received more encouragement in my What’s in a Name contest than title ideas. But I am grateful for all of it! Unfortunately, none of the titles I did receive work quite right, and thus there is no official winner. I am still planning on donating a portion of the proceeds to agencies that help people with MS so I guess you could say we are all winners here.

In the meantime, I am working away on edits and will keep you posted as soon as I get a title that I can post about. But since I wanted to update you on the status of the contest, it occurred to me that some other updates on the blog are in order as well. Let’s check in on how some things have turned out.

In MS Sucks I wrote about how multiple sclerosis was doing its damnedest to keep me away from seeing my favorite band, the Rolling Stones. Well MS, you still suck BUT you lost! My Rolling Stones fairy godmother is stronger than you and she helped me get a ticket and a ride to the show!

 

I will likely be in pain and a fatigued zombie for a while afterwards but it will be worth it to the see the icons of classic rock. (Mick would agree with that description of his band. Keith and Charlie are pretty humble so they would disagree and name other musicians they feel are more worthy. Ronnie would just take another shot of whiskey and toss off a lick or two.)

Many fellow MS’ers and readers agreed with my nomination of Forget-me-nots as the official flower of multiple sclerosis. But when I reminded them about it so that they could sign the petition, they forgot. So much for that idea….

 

And speaking of flowers, the day after I posted The Evil Curse of the Yellow Green Demon Dust, it rained and temperatures dropped to the point where many people were forced to put on their heat. This week the demon dust was back and they are predicting a heat wave by the weekend! Oh well, at least the cold weather gave me the break I needed to pull out my air conditioner.

My last ‘get fit’ plan update was in early April with the Not Working It Out post, followed by a brief commentary on the plan in early May with Once Bitten. It is time for some new information.

My ‘get fit’ plan is totally coming together! I have lost 6 lbs since the first of the year. Add to that the 5 lbs I had lost previously when I was chasing my great nephews around the hot, yucky state they live in, and that makes (hold on, let me grab my calculator,) 11 lbs!

I admit that that is not even close to where I hoped to be when I see my neuro in July. And with the arrival soon of my hometown’s annual Portuguese Festival filled with linguica, Portuguese bread, wine and sitting on a bench watching Portuguese dancers, I may not make my goal..

 

But I have accomplished some things. For example, I have completely given up diet coke and have pretty much given up bread. (Unless I am at a restaurant then I will eat bread, but none at home. Unless I am having a sandwich, but almost none at home.)

Recently I was planning for company and needed to make some snacks. I saw a recipe for incredibly delicious looking cookies that I made but messed up the recipe and they turned into a crumbly mess. So I didn’t eat the cookies. I just used the crumbles to top ice cream.

I still needed a snack for my group and had the ingredients left over and so I made them again. This time they came out the way they were supposed to but I have to say, they were too sweet for me!!!

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How is that even possible? Before my ‘get fit’ plan I was the queen of sweet! Honestly, I really didn’t like them. The dough was much tastier.

I insisted that my group divide the leftover cookies between themselves and take them home. But, I refused to share the leftover grapes and put the grape bowl in my fridge next to the delicious strawberries I had bought the day before. One of my friends commented on all the produce I also had in there. She found swiss chard and the berries, and mint and lime that I also bought for a cleanse I was doing.

Speaking of a cleanse, I have become addicted to water. I drink so much water I could be a fish. Wouldn’t that be fun? I so wish, I wish I were a fish….

 

And speaking of fish, I have started taking walks on the beach. No, I haven’t gone in the water as I still look too scary to put on a bathing suit- don’t want to scare the great whites away! But I have come out of my cave and walk so I can exercise and soak up natural vitamin D. I like to make my walking social, so I bring my Wii Fit with me for company….

Oh, and I quit smoking!!!! Ok, I actually quit smoking several years ago but I think it still counts. And now, when I bum a cigarette off of a friend here and there, I actually feel gross afterwards…

So you see, even the babiest of baby steps eventually do get you someplace…It is taking me longer than I should to make healthy changes but I am thrilled that the changes are being made. I know that a whole lifestyle change is in order but it is unlikely that I will suddenly adapt to that. So for now, I just keep stepping along, thrilled that I have moved past crawling..

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Image courtesy of [Stuart Miles] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of [Stuart Miles] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of [Danilo Rizzuti] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

A Few of My Favorite Things

An MS Thanksgiving post

 For some reason, I can’t get the above song out of my head even though I have usually found it slightly annoying. It is kind of a Christmas song, although not written as such. As someone who loves autumn so much so that she enjoys taking her cool weather holidays one at a time, I’m not sure why this song is hanging around my lesion filled brain.

Perhaps it is because next week is Thanksgiving and the above reminds everyone what what’s her name from that movie is grateful for. Thus, why isn’t My Favorite Things thought of as a Thanksgiving song?

I have so many things for which to be grateful, that I couldn’t possible name them all or fit them into a song. And trust me, mittens and kittens are not at the top of the list. Just thinking about Thanksgiving makes me grateful.

For example, if my small family winds up at my place on the holiday then I am super grateful that the local grocery store sells what I like to call ‘turkey in a box’; a complete holiday dinner you can just throw into the oven all prepared and no one is the wiser.

I am grateful for pumpkin pie– how could I have possibly left out pumpkin pie on my last post Pumpkins, Pumpkins Everywhere?

I am thankful that Thanksgiving is a day where it is perfectly appropriate to eat too much and veg out. It is actually un-American not to do so.

And I am thankful that even the fruits and veggies cooperate on this day and aren’t too obnoxious- think mashed potatoes, stuffing with celery, cranberry sauce, candied yams, pumpkin pie. I know, again with the pumpkin overkill.

I am grateful for the knowledge that Black Friday is just a scam of hype and deals that aren’t really deals, thus allowing smug people like me the luxury to stay home, eat too many leftovers and veg out for one more day.

But this is a multiple sclerosis blog and so if I am going to list things that I am grateful for, or a few of my favorite things, I should focus on MS. What could one possibly find to be grateful for about MS? I thought about my last few years living with this illness and did miraculously come up with things to be grateful for.

For example, while I am not thankful to have to give myself shots, I AM very thankful that they seem to be working. And I am thankful for the extra fat cushion I have to soften the shot just a bit. I still HATE doing them though.

I am thankful to have a knowledgeable, kind, patient, young, handsome neurologist on my side as I battle MS. I am NOT thankful that he happens to be married but I guess you can’t have everything.

I am grateful that my primary doctor diagnosed my diagnosis quickly without having to do a spinal tap as I have heard they are just horrific. She just had me electrocuted and shot through a tube a couple of times and we were good to go.

These bits of MS gratitude did not seem grateful enough. I started looking over my blog posts for more help and realized that I started this blog over a year ago and it has since grown from a whenever I felt like it post, to a once a month post, to twice a month post and then to a once a week post. (Thank you to multiple sclerosis for continuing to give me enough material to keep this wacky blog going- oh wait- maybe not….)

In my past blogs there were other examples of MS things I had to be thankful for. In the post Stormy, Sleepy Sandy, I talk about my bladder alarm clock screaming at me to get up. I am thankful that the alarm clock part of my bladder is still working. It has been quite a long while since I have had ‘an accident’ and I would like to keep it that way for as long as possible!

I am thankful that kale is considered an awesome veggie for MS’er’s as well as the world as a whole, and I can sneak its precious nutrients into my all time favorite comfort food, kale soup- see post Kale, the New Frontier.

I am thankful that due to cognitive difficulties that come from MS, when I do something stupid I have a disease I can totally blame it on (Stupid MS).

While fatigue and clumsiness are constant companions, and I am may not move so gracefully going about my day- No Moves Like Jagger but Smooth Like Montel and Chop Their Happy Little Heads Off posts- I am grateful that I am still moving. Being able to move about without any help is definitely something to be grateful for, even if you do move like a slug most days.

And while an eye exam discovered a new disgusting condition, Oily Tears and All, I am grateful it didn’t show any significant damage as yet to my optic nerve. I will be able to continue reading the numbers on my bedroom scale and the milligrams on my medications going up, up up a while longer…

And speaking of weight and Montel, I am grateful to all my friends and family who have helped me on this journey, whether they sent me cool tools and recipes to try to get fit- The Star Wars Way and 50 Shades of Green/Doing It Veggie Style posts, or whether they sent words of encouragement, or are just reading the blog after I have it to them a million times, even if it is just to shut me up about it, I am grateful.

And on this sappy holiday of Thanksgiving, I must say I am thankful to God who is the real being responsible for the above. My health, my sense of humor or lack thereof depending on your opinion dear reader, my friends, my family and everything good comes from HIM. Fortunately for me, HE also enjoys a good joke or two. HE absolutely appreciates a rip roaring laugh. I think that may be why he created us in the first place!

A Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving to all!

 

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