There’s a quiet monster nipping at my heels. It’s actually nipping at my brain and spinal cord, throwing my whole body into disarray. Multiple Sclerosis has moved slowly through me since 2006 and it doesn’t make much noise. But every now and then my arm goes numb without any warning, or my left leg takes a while to start working in the morning. My energy level is generally like that of a half-charged battery, pain pounds through my joints at night, and sometimes the skin on my right side feels like it’s on fire.
MS interferes with the communication between the nerve cells in my brain and the rest of me, so sometimes I have trouble walking, keeping my balance, or seeing clearly. After all this time, I’m past the point of asking “why me?” because if not me, then who? If not this, then what? If not now, then when?
So many people suffer with some form of illness or disability. We’ve got gnarly ogres roaring and pounding at our insides, causing damage to our outsides. Maybe we’re missing a limb, maybe it’s a chronic illness that keeps us in pain or limits our mobility. Maybe it’s a creature lurking in the brain that paralyzes our will to try anything at all, but I believe that in each one of us there is a warrior laying out strategy to help us fight our beasts. We each carry the tools for some victory within us. And since we’re fighting monsters, there’s no reason to be quiet.