His writing is stellar and he is an intelligent and insightful person that I enjoy listening to via podcast. He stated in the recent episode that he's in relapse right now and is fighting to avoid having to go back to using his cane.
I do not pity him, because I feel that pity is horrible. I empathize because of my own miscellaneous medical history, which includes (and will continue to include, as it's chronic) some experiences with my spinal nerve not functioning properly. I can't begin to fathom how much of a challenge daily life can be for him when he is relapsing. He even said, "mine isn't that bad" and tried to downplay it. And I know others who also face MS on a daily basis, who don't seem to see it remiss, who also continue in just the same fashion with a fire that others lack, taking their unaffected health for granted.
What I suppose the result of discovering this REALLY is, is a rekindling of my determination to do all that I am capable of doing in face of any odds or trials. If he and everyone else with any sort of lifelong challenge can get up each day and do their best, still smiling and laughing and creating, then there is nothing to question as to whether I should do the same. Whether I MUST. Regardless of times I feel alone or overwhelmed, unsure of myself or frightened.
It's the essence of all I hold dear, what he and others like him embody on a daily basis. It's the essence of part of my artistic mission. It's all that I hope to become, myself, and so on a Monday morning with a week of time-consuming, challenging work I feel myself greatly moved. I'm just now readjusting my miscellaneous tidbits of art into a semblance of what my writing has focused on for years, and I have some things to finish up before you will see my mission reflected in my work more fully, but I am in process and will continue to move forward. Throughout the year the new work will filter onto this page and into galleries around town.
Live, learn, and love. And never, EVER stop. Thank you to everyone that I have known who has faced challenges and found strength...then turned around to express compassion and understanding towards others, taking the time to inspire.
Please consider making a donation to the National MS Society.