Being a (MS) Jedi

It’s been a couple of weeks since my last post, and despite having promised that I would post a third post as part of my #WorldMSDay tirade I found myself being overwhelmed by the MS. So, this being the first day in a while that the “fog” has cleared up (not gone, but at least it’s not as bad), here goes.

Today we’ll discuss treatment options, and which might be best.

While I do not claim to be an expert, I do consider myself to be well versed as to the options that are out there for MS patients, and try to keep up with the news whenever I see a story related to MS. My friends all know this, so if they come across a MS related story, they forward it to me – simply to let me know what the latest development being reported is.

Truth be told, there seems to be a flurry of discoveries/developments in the MS treatment field and in understanding MS. Promising stem cell studies, new medication, repurposed medication, vitamin related discoveries, nutrition related discoveries – take your pick. And it’s all wonderful. Except, you have to remember that it’s not as wonderful as it is presented.

Before you accuse me of trying to take away hope away from MS patients, remember that I am one of them. And I need that hope too. Heck, I have that hope every time I read a new story about a development in MS treatment. But I always take it with a grain of salt.

I also understand that there are patients out there whose disease has developed way more than mine. People that need assistance performing even the simplest tasks. And I admire those people, more than I would ever admire a great politician, a scientific visionary, a literary genius. Because what they manage to achieve despite the hurdles put in their way is much more impressive – at least in my eyes.

[enter the cynic in me]

Having gotten that out of the way, all those therapies are great. But we have to remember that there is no silver bullet to a disease as complex as MS. Perhaps this is even where Western medicine has failed for all these years: there is no “one size fits all” treatment.

That all seems to be changing now, with ever-greater investment in personalized medicine – going to the trouble of discovering what works for each patient individually, with as little experimentation on said patient as possible.

So where does that leave MS patients? Well, it leaves them with hope, but usually nothing tangible. But we cannot give up hope (or research for that matter). In the meantime, we can do the best we can with what we have – listen to our physicians for they know more than us, find solace in the people closest to us that are that are there despite the hardship, take care of our health, eat healthy, exercise, remain cheerful despite the pain, and perhaps look at life a bit more philosophically (or using the lense of religion if you like). And most of all, remember to remain calm, not because “a Jedi will you be” as the feature image says, but because “a Jedi you already are.” For all that you do, for all that you are, for all that you will be.

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