I'm a woman with multiple sclerosis who loves her 3 cats and is somewhat opinionated. I deal with emotional issues, such as depression and all that comes with having MS. I'm also an Atheist, which I'm quite proud to be. I love to write and share my thoughts and feelings.
Sunday, March 25, 2012
MS.. looking at the ugliness of our brain lesions.. and still smiling!
I go in for my next batch of MRI's tomorrow so my neurologist can see if I have new lesions in my brain or if my old ones are active once again. I'm hoping I do not have more lesions as this would indicate advancement in my MS and the more the MS moves forward, the more my health goes backwards.
Most of us have seen this type of MRI picture, right?
Years ago one of my former, and absolute favorite, neurologists showed me my MRI's upon my asking. Seeing the scans depressed me to such an extent that I pleaded with him to not show me any future scans, no matter how much I begged. My outlook is very different now and I wish to be far more informed and knowledgeable about what is happening in my body, including seeing the scans of my brain (and/or spine). The MS is not who I am so it no longer bothers me quite as much.. until I saw something a few weeks ago.
My friend Mike told me that the wife of a friend was diagnosed with MS and the way her neurologist had described MS was that she had "clouds" on her brain. Hmm. Clouds? Really? I guess that's an easy way to explain it when looking at an MRI but take a look at THIS and tell me if they still look like clouds!
The arrows are pointing at MS brain lesions.
When I first saw the above photograph, I literally cried. It was the first time I literally saw what MS looked like and I wanted to vomit. MS lesions are not clouds. MS lesions are not little white marks on our MRI scans. MS is FUCKING UGLY AS HELL AND IS EATING UP OUR BRAINS!!! I think seeing this photo was also one of the first times, in recent years, when I felt completely helpless to this beast (MS) which lives within me. It's taking bits of me away with each passing moment and all I can do is.. basically nothing. Yes, I'm on Tysabri and I still do my physical therapy exercises, go to my chiropractor and take whatever meds I need in order to make my life more tolerable.. but in the end, the MS will do as it chooses because it has more power than I do. I do my best to keep a strong, positive attitude, but I can do nothing to eradicate the MS from my brain and that is as true as can be.
Will I allow this image to dictate how I live my life? No, absolutely not. Yet it has put a different spin on how I see the MS. Not only do I know what it feels like to have MS, I now know what the bitch looks like when I'm cursing at it. MS finally has a face so it deserves to be as ugly as it is. Clouds are far too pretty to be associated with MS! So I will take the knowledge I have gained and hold my head high and face it, as I always have, and smile in the face of adversity. I am strong because I have no choice but to be strong. Life goes on and will continue on.. and I intend to live it to the fullest.