Christmas is just around the corner, and that’s why many people are on the fruitless quest for Fingerlings or hocking an organ to buy the new iPhone. Both might be the “hot” presents of the season, but neither of them holds a candle to the great gifts we all receive as multiple sclerosis patients every single day of the year. And wouldn’t you know it? They make a Christmas acrostic, too! How nifty.
I’m thankful for the gifts of…
Caregivers. So many people in my life have come alongside me in my fight with MS. I am very thankful for them all, especially my wonderful husband who has been there since day one and has never once given up on me. I also have to thank my parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and good friends who are always there for me.
Heroism. Since my diagnosis, I’ve had the privilege of meeting some of the millions of brave MS patients out there. We’ve crossed paths at MS walks, mud runs, bike rides, and other fundraisers. We’ve met at seminars and during presentations. We’ve sat side by side at doctor’s offices. And every person I’ve crossed paths with is fighting hard battles. Their bravery and courage never fail to amaze.
Research. Hundreds of doctors and researchers are out there working in corporate labs or on university campuses, and though they’re doing so in different ways, they are all diligently seeking cures or new treatments that will help us. It’s hard, frustrating work, but they keep at it. And I, for one, am eternally grateful for their diligence.
Identity. Having multiple sclerosis isn’t always a picnic, but I am strangely happy it came into my life. It has helped me clarify many things about my life — who I am, what is possible, and what my purpose on this earth is. MS has shown me what truly matters and has forever changed my priorities for the better.
Sacrifice. MS calls for the sacrifice of so many things, and not just from MS patients. Every doctor who works the extra hours to help a patient chooses to sacrifice family time or much-needed rest. Volunteers who work MS events or in National Multiple Sclerosis Society offices around the country give their time and energy for a cause they believe in. Bless them all in their labors.