I nearly passed by this ad in the March issue of Shape magazine, assuming it was related to fashion or something I don't particularly care about, but in the middle of turning the page I read the tagline and stopped for a closer look.
Live with boldness. It's time to rethink multiple sclerosis. fearlessms.org
Interesting ad campaign, eh? I examined the website, and it appears to be an offshoot organization of the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation. The Fearless MS site is pretty basic, consisting of a concise description of the disease, an open letter from MSer Laura Mann about her experiences with MS, and some calls to action for donation including the suggestion that brides and groom request donations to the MSF in lieu of wedding gifts. Of note, the model in the ad photo, Shannon Rusbuldt, heads the charity event Fashion's Fight Against MS.
I just checked out the Fearless MS facebook page, and I see that there is a second ad just coming out in some other magazines, this one featuring a bride:
Overall, I think this is a great move by the MSF - getting great visibility in the high profile publications they're working with and using a punchy, hip, youthful vibe to grab attention and hopefully dollars for the cause.
Just a light, fluttery, tickly feeling on a very specific piece of lumbar real estate. In a certain context, this feeling could be downright pleasant. In this one, it is anything but. It's not just that it's in a place that is hard to reach. It's not even that easy access for a scratch or rub wouldn't make a speck of difference. And it's not that it's the middle of the night when I should be sleeping and the sensory distraction isn't exactly welcome.
So, what makes this tickle so very upsetting to me at this moment? Because it is a tickle I know well. The exact same feeling, in the exact same location. The same light fluttery feeling at least a few times a minute that I felt quite often during Year One of MS (aka the awful-horrible-how-did-i-ever-finish-my-masters-degree-while-battling-relapse-after-relapse-and-just-dealing-with-the-scary-terrible-diagnosis year). The same feeling, in fact, that I usually would feel as a warning symptom, before the deluge of more-debilitating symptoms made their presence known. So, you see, a tickle is not just a tickle. It's not just one of the dozens of annoying little sensory issues I deal with in relation to MS. It's that its the symptom that I seem to deeply associate with that scary what-is-coming-next feeling.
After Year One of MS and its eight or so delightful relapses, after starting Tysabri and being relapse-free for 4-ish years, I did very occasionally feel the tickle. And its warning cry brought no following deluge, so my rational mind should be able to accept that this is not necessarily an If-Then kind of situation. And, I do, mostly. But this sensory misfire always takes me back to that scary, dark frame of mind. It always reminds me that there is scarring in my brain and spinal cord. It always reminds me that, warning cry or not, something could be coming next. Lots of things could be coming next. And next could be never, or soon, or later, or now.
1. I was recently tested for the JC virus again, at the 6th month point. Still negative, baby! So I'll be happily sticking with Tysabri for now. This gives me a lot of peace of mind, despite the concern that I could unknowingly contract JC at any time. I'll continue getting it checked every 6 months.
2. I'm an introvert, so I enjoyed the following video a few minutes ago. Some of my favorite quotes: "Solitude matters!" "Stop the madness for constant groupwork!" "The world needs you and it needs the things you carry."
3. I need to get my 30x30 list completely finalized and up on this blog, or maybe a 2nd linked blog. I have most of the list complete, and I've started crossing items off the list, especially on the trying 30 new foods list.
4. I am sooooooo behind on reading MS blogs, but I hope to find some time to catch up with you all soon!
5. It was my birthday last week, and I still have a few free meal/treat/drink coupons to use before they expire in the next day or two. Tonight, I'm thinking it's time to return to Noodles & Company after a long hiatus. I ate there right after getting the MS diagnosis 5-ish years ago, and that negative feeling has been connected with the place ever since. But it's time to move on. So bring on my free Indonesian Peanut Saute! Yum!
Today, I am thankful that I haven't fallen on the ice at all this winter. It has overall been a much milder winter here in the tundra than normal, but we have had many days of treacherous travel over icy sidewalks, including today. Some years past I have fallen several times, but so far this year I am definitely winning the ice battle, mostly due to slow and cautious steps, and sometimes holding on to someone for support.
The only time so far I fell this year, I was on dry, flat land. While this very much bummed me out and reminded of many falls in past days of MS troubles, today I happily express gratitude for no icy falls!
In honor of this subject, here are a few photos taken on my recent California vacation that my friends and I found rather amusing:
If you have fallen recently due to ice or MS or any other reason, I hope you are okay and that perhaps you can find some humor in the situation by imagining your own personal stick figure image of a caution sign! Wishing you all a fall-free Friday tomorrow!