Saturday, June 23, 2012

Stop focusing on others and BREATHE!

I feel terribly guilty for not having written anything lately but to be honest, my mind has been quite blank these last few days.  Maybe it would be more accurate to say it has been more on the scattered side, than blank.  I start writing and my mind goes off in so many different directions that any thought I almost had, flies out the window and I'm left wondering what the heck I had wanted to write about in the first place.  Yup, cognitive difficulties!  I'm having those a lot lately.

I began writing this entry late last night but my mind is more clear this evening and I feel I should write about something that many have been commenting on in the MS RANT OUT LOUD room on Facebook.  The topic has been the announcement and interview with Jack Osborn on the television show The Talk.  I had not seen the show on the day it aired (June 20, 2012) but found the link a little bit ago and watched. Keeping in mind the absolute anger, rage even, that many have expressed towards Jack's reaction to the diagnosis, I was expecting to have a completely different opinion of the show, but I was pleasantly surprised.  Comments I have read ranged from his being in denial to his being the "wrong person" to represent those of us with MS to his being rich somehow makes a difference and will make his battle easier.  I have to disagree with all those statements.
I have been wondering, what if Jack Osborn is actually much stronger than anyone realizes?  It could very well be that he has not done enough research on MS quite yet and is choosing to put his attention on his fiance and their newborn baby girl rather than immerse himself in depressing facts centered on the life he will face with MS and I find this perfectly understandable.  Who could blame him?  I would try to concentrate on more pleasant subjects, too!  I remember how it was when I was first diagnosed and if anyone would have asked me questions, I would have been at a loss to respond in a way befitting the journey which had been thrust upon me.  Jack Osborn is only five weeks into his battle with MS.  I feel some compassion is needed in this case and I would hope anyone would give a newly diagnosed individual time to cope and understand what may lie ahead.

One of the points some had brought up was his being from a wealthy family and yes, this will make many things easier for him but it won't heal him.  The lovely Ms. Annette Funicello, of The Mickey Mouse Club fame, has not done well with her multiple sclerosis.  Comic genius Richard Pryor was diagnosed with MS in 1986 (age 46), was wheelchair bound by the mid 1990's and died of a heart attack at the age of 65.  David Lander, who played "Squiggy" on Laverne and Shirley was diagnosed with MS in 1984 but did not make it public knowledge until 1999.  Actress Teri Garr, who starred in the movie Tootsie with Dustin Hoffman, also has MS.  Apparently, her problems began during the filming of this movie in the early 80's.  The reason I am listing these famous people is that whether someone has money or not, MS can still hit you.. sometimes hard and other times not as much.  But this goes for anyone!  Sure, they can afford better power chairs and housekeepers and things like that, but they can no more find a cure than any of us.  And honestly, I do not wish a harsh prognosis on Jack Osborn but if his having MS will bring our disease more recognition than it has gotten, then perhaps this will be a new, positive direction in his life.  But I do not know anything about him so I should not even say this.  For all I know, he has cleaned up his life from what it once was (I read that he was a drug user in the past) and already had a great outlook.
All this being said, I hope everyone will focus on themselves and not worry about anyone else's battles quite so much.  We have enough in our lives as it is and to put so much energy on others is draining!  Take a deep breath and be glad you are still here to go on one more day.. one more day to smile, laugh, love and breathe in one more breath.

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