|Life (Photo credit: Light Knight)|
Do I miss my old life, the one before MS?
You bet I do.
When do I miss it?
Every time I think about it.
How often do I think about it?My life was quite satisfactory before MS reared its ugly head. Yet, I spend so little time lamenting my losses. I’m too busy living in the moment, my new moment, my new life. So much of what I thought defined me as a person no longer exists. Thankfully, my new interests and passions are proving to be satisfactory in their own right.
Not very often.
I’ll contrast this with my father’s situation. As he aged and lost the ability to enjoy his lifelong pursuits, his world kept shrinking until he sat in front of the TV and watched ESPN most of the day. He wasn’t open-minded and willing to explore alternatives, and he suffered for that in his later years.
I’m not claiming that my quality of life is as good as it used to be. But I’ve learned not to dwell on this. I live in harmony with my healthy past. My memories bring me more joy than resentment. From time to time I look at old photos or share stories with friends and family. I even write blog posts which draw heavily from these memories. But when I am done reminiscing, I occupy myself with one of my new pursuits, to stave off self-pity or wallowing. It works most of the time.
My message, therefore, is this. Yes, cultivate and pursue your interests with enthusiasm. Don’t hold back. But be wary of defining yourself by these same passions, because things can change in a heartbeat. Remember, the name of the game is to live a fulfilling life. Just because you may have found one formula for accomplishing this, keep in mind that there are other means to the same end.