We each go about our daily lives thinking we are in total control. If I go to work, I'll get my paycheck and pay my bills. We think. (What if your payroll check bounces? Happened TWICE to me in my lifetime). I'll save for retirement and a "rainy day" often doing without to do so. Then we watch our bank go under and the stock market crumble. There went my 401K. Again, no control.
Then, as we're living our lives, loving our families and pets, illness strikes. Not our own, but a beloved pet or family member. All we can do is helplessly stand by and watch. Feeling even more helpless because all we CAN do is pray and give support. Often that doesn't feel half enough. We're frustrated because we CAN'T fix it for them. Again, no control.
If illness strikes us, we have some control. As scant as that control may be. We can control which treatments we take, or not. That's about it. Except for one very important thing. We have TOTAL control over how we choose to react about our circumstances. We can give in, curl up in a fetal position and just give up. OR, we can choose to handle ourselves with as much grace as we can muster. (Sometimes it's not much). I have found, that for me personally, reaching out to others helps me keep my journey with MS in perspective. There are so many folks out there in the world suffering and hurting. Not just because of MS. They have lost loved ones. Whether those loved ones are part of their human or animal family the pain is no less. There are those who have lost their jobs and their homes. Too many families are apart because of war and other hardships. Too many families are torn apart because of ill spoken words and lack of ability to forgive. I thank God I "only" fall into the MSer category. True, I have had some serious struggles related to the MS, and I'm sure I have more ahead. However, it's about perspective and the realization that I have NO CONTROL. I just do the best I can and have a wonderful support network. Instead on focusing on "poor me" I reach out to others who are struggling and hurting. Their pain makes mine pale in comparison. They look at me at can't imagine how I'm coping in the chair. I look at them and can't imagine how they are dealing with the grief of having to put their long time four legged companion to sleep. (Rest in Peace Cody). Or, how they are coping with the loss of their home or job. I keep things in perspective by KNOWING it could ALWAYS be worse. SO, I count by blessings, hug my husband, my old dog and know that while I have no control over what will happen, I can control my reaction and how I cope. I keep a strangle hold on HOPE. I hope for better days for everyone. I hope that one day they will find a cure, not only for MS but for all disease. I pray that one day the world will have peace and that no more families will be separated. The world is such a big place of which I am such a small part. It's not control which keeps us moving forward, but Hope.