As this year is winding down, I find myself looking back at what 2007 has meant to me. This has been quite the interesting year, filled with losses, additions, and many mediocre “whatevers” in between.
Though I didn’t know it at that time, I began having symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis at the end of January. Well, at least this is when they became apparent enough to start causing some distress. March brought my daughter’s 10th birthday, but not before we had to put one of our family cats, Neo, to sleep (why do they call it that, anyway?) a few days before the big event.
Months of physical therapy brought me to the end of June, when numbness in my fingertips and arm made me realize something was going really awry within my body. Multiple tests, starting with a negative nerve conduction study and ending with an MRI that proved positive for lesions, started me on my journey called “What in the hell is Multiple Sclerosis and what does it have to do with me?”
Did I mention that this MRI took place one day after my 30th birthday and eighteen days before my wedding?
Yet another test, a lumbar puncture, done at the beginning of September, offered the doctors more ammo to shoot my way when it came to that fateful day (sounds so ominous, huh?) on November 9th when I received an official diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis.
Fast forward to today when I put my second cat of the year to sleep. As I said, there were many other things in between all of those big events. I call them mediocre “whatevers” because, keeping in perspective of all the others, they just don’t seem as big. A third cat ran away (we got him back), my car broke down (I got a new one), I fell down some stairs at work (I got 6 staples in my head…oh, wait, that wasn’t a positive!).
So what have I learned from this year? Good question. Well, I’ve learned that you shouldn’t plan too far ahead because crazy things like MS just might rear its ugly head in your life. I’ve learned that an identity is an ever-changing thing. I’ve learned to hold the handrail while walking down the stairs, especially if they are cement! 🙂
I’ve still got a lot to learn from this year, and it may take most or all of 2008 to learn it. A lot has happened to throw me for a loop, and I’m slowly regaining my balance (no MS joke here either).
What I knew prior to 2007 is that I am strong. Though this seems like a massive amount of life-altering events to take in (and it is), I am confident that I will find ways to come to terms with all that 2007, and life in general, has brought upon me….it just may take a bit longer than usual. Happy 2007 and may 2008 be a little calmer!