~ It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters. ~ Epictetus
At the age of 27 I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. MS is a radically different disease for every one of us who is dealing with it. Depending on where the lesions that have attacked your brain and spinal cord are located, the negative impacts on your body will vary greatly. My disease is primarily located in my spinal cord and in my cerebellum. As a result, I walk like a drunk and stumble regularly sometimes crashing to the ground very ungracefully. After 22 years with this disease I’ve become an expert at navigating a world full of challenges and hurdles while, most importantly, maintaining a happy and hopeful outlook.
Now at the age of 49, I own 2 canes, three walkers, a wheelchair and a mobility scooter. My balance and walking ability are extremely compromised. There are many other symptoms that cause challenges for me on a daily basis. My bladder, my fine motor skills and my sensitivity to heat all drive me crazy.
With MS, I’ve been forced to roll with the punches and make plenty of adjustments along the way. In Stumble to Rise, I share the secret I’ve learned during this challenge is that “…there isn’t just one way to achieve a goal. When the most obvious route becomes impassible, there is another one available. It becomes my job to find it.”
Every single one of us is dealing with something. For some, divorce, job loss, mental illness or addiction may be the source of struggle. It’s vital, therefore, that we all learn this simple navigation system rule. I bring this idea to life In Stumble to Rise.
Even with helpful signs guiding our way, the journey of life is riddled with potholes and wrong turns. They are mostly unpredicted bumps in the road like being diagnosed with a disease or any other possible challenge.