What's your MS-Free Zone? Don't know what that is? Ask yourself these questions. There's no right or wrong answer. Whatever they mean to you.
The answers to these kinds of questions, make up your self-image. And believe it or not, you still have a self image. You may feel that your MS has taken away your sense of self. Taken away the very essence of who you are. Others may feel that MS has taken away their ability to do the things they love most. You still have the skills you have accumulated over your lifetime. Your life experiences have contributed to who you are.
MS affects you and other MSers in such different ways. It can limit your ability to do the things you loved to do. It may cause you to be unable to do them at all. So you may actually grieve the loss of doing those things.
With all this being said, there are things about you that cannot be touched. Maybe it's your sense of humor. Maybe it's your love of literature, art, or music. If you played a musical instrument, are you still able to play? Is another instrument more suitable to your abilities now? Are you a good listener or speaker? Are your beliefs what make you who you are?
Whatever it is, you are still you and this is your MS-Free Zone. This is the part of you that MS can't touch. It's your self-image. No matter what challenges you face, or changes you have to make, you are still you. You may have to do things differently. You may have to re-evaluate your strengths and learn new talents, but the very essence of you will always be there.
Cir has been a musician since he was 12 years old. He started out playing the piano and went on to become an accomplished drummer. When he was diagnosed with MS, he slowly lost the ability to move his right leg. If you are a drummer, or have watched drummers in action, you know that they need their legs.
Because of this loss - which he grieved – he began teaching himself to play the bass. He's pretty good now, and he now has a way to continue to enjoy playing music. He may eventually be part of a band again, but even if he isn't, at least he has something that helps him in many ways.
It helps him emotionally by strengthening his sense of self. Physically, he has something that helps him maintain his hand flexibility and strength. That's a win-win situation – don't you agree?
So, what's your MS-Free Zone? We'd love to know what makes you, you...
Do you have an MS-Free Zone? If so, share it with us. What area of your life has MS not touched or changed in a significant way. Is it your sense of humor? Is it your love of music? Is it your poetry?
What can you still do that you used to do before you were diagnosed with MS?
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Cir & Akrista
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