Tuesday, 30 September 2014

What Happens in the Past...



This is the same post I put on my other blog today, I'm sharing it here because it also relates to an issue of my MS.

My thirteen year old granddaughter delights in hearing stories about her mother’s teenage years. Her mother doesn’t.

As the family was gathered for dinner Sunday night a few stories were told about noisy neighbours and all night partying. My brother, who is a big guy and can look intimidating, used his physical presence to get the point across to the party-goers he was telling us about.

I laughed and said he could have called the police as my neighbours had done when my then teenage daughter had a party one night I was away. I did cover my granddaughter’s ears so I didn’t let out any family secrets.

As I related the story my daughter was adamant in her denial that it ever happened. After all, she said, “You’re cognitively impaired.”

I looked at her with surprise. She was right in what she’d said, and I had to laugh. I do have memory issues related to my MS, but sorry kiddo, it pertains to working, or short term memory, not long time, old memories.

We’ve all had to adapt our way of communicating, and my children have been very supportive with my memory issues. Supportive and comfortable enough to joke about it.


As my daughter said, laughing, she wasn’t admitting to anything and was using whatever was convenient to support her position of denial. It was a fun moment, a feel good moment that let me feel part of the group when I can so often feel separate.

Monday, 29 September 2014

Old Fashioned Recipes


Here's a link to some old fashioned recipes. I liked the opening, the talk of family get-togethers and the importance food has in so many of our memories. It says exactly what I was feeling, and maybe explains some of my feelings about giving up baking and cooking.


http://www.recipelion.com/Editors-Picks/25-Charming-Old-Fashioned-Recipes/ml/1/?utm_source=ppl-newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=recipelion20140929

Bake No More

We had our family Thanksgiving dinner early this year. We have to adhere to an every other weekend schedule if we want the whole group together, for a number of reasons. And this weekend was perfect because my daughter had her niece and nephew for the weekend and the majority of the family would be in the same place come Sunday.

My daughter cooked the entire meal on her own, a feat she made appear effortless late in the afternoon, though I imagine we missed some stressful moments from earlier in the day, especially with six kids running about the house.

My responsibility was to bring the dessert, pumpkin pie being the 1st choice for everyone. Years ago it would have been nothing for me to bake up a storm of pies, along with some other tasty treats. In these last few years I’ve resorted to store bought pies with some added home baking.

It’s been hard to admit but I feel my baking days are behind me, and I’m left with the memories of baking for the family, baking with my grandchildren.

I need my stool when working in the kitchen, as I can’t stand for long without pain in my back. The bar type stool works well except it means I have to do everything with my arms raised high. So baking, and using the mixer, is difficult. Within minutes the mixer feels heavy and I’m struggling. I’ve tried to adapt, using cake mixes instead of using a recipe, making cakes or cupcakes the day ahead to spread out the effort required.

But it’s not just the physical struggle; it’s the mental strain while struggling physically. It means mistakes are made and results get tossed in the garbage. Of late there have been more failures than successes.

Saturday I baked a new recipe, adapting the recipe to make it easier, and doing without one ingredient that I figured was optional. The whole mess went into the garbage.

So, on my way to dinner I stopped at the store, intent on buying two pies, apple and pumpkin. Either a lot of other people were also celebrating an early Thanksgiving or the store doesn’t stock pumpkin pies until closer to the actual holiday, but there was no pumpkin pie to be found.

Just in case I bought an apple and a strawberry/rhubarb, added in some butter tarts as they are always a family favourite.

Guilt is a terrible thing. I felt like I was letting my family down. This was another loss for me, something else to add to the Can’t Do Anymore list, making my Can Do list a little shorter. It’s much more than an activity, it’s a part of who I was, who I was to my family and grandchildren.

I guess you’d have to be there to fully understand, but for me the whole situation just sucks. But, at the same time, admitting it makes things easier, and maybe I’ll rid my shelves of all the baking paraphernalia and gain some cupboard space. I’m trying to think positive.

By the time I got to M & M’s the guilt hadn’t worn off completely. I got the pumpkin pie, and added a box of mini ├ęclairs I thought the kids might like. We ended up with way too many sweets, which was fine with the grandkids, and everyone got some pie to take home.

I need to find those recipes that are easy to make, maybe stovetop instead of baked, and wean myself off this need to cook for the kids, but it’s been such a pleasure point in my life.

Baby steps, it’s all baby steps.




Thursday, 18 September 2014

Unproductive Time



I’ve previously written about my ongoing fatigue and I have to say the mental fatigue or brain fog is sometimes worse than the physical. With the mental fatigue I am unable to think, unable to do, but even if physically tired I can do some things, like write or crochet.

I had a toothache over the long weekend, and figured I’d call the dentist on the Tuesday for an emergency appointment. But that Sunday night I came down with a cold and felt the fates were on my side. By Tuesday I may have been suffering from a head cold and a constant cough, but the toothache seemed to go away.

I endured the week, was visited by the soup fairy who brought me soup and cough lozenges and by the next week, I was finally getting better. But it had been a totally unproductive week, at least for what I’d hoped to accomplish.

In the middle of all that, as I was recovering from the cold, I hurt my finger so my excursions out were to the grocery store and the walk-in clinic. I did make it out for my usual Thursday lunch but it was a short day, and I was glad because I wasn’t up for much.
I had the toothache again over the weekend and finally saw the dentist on Tuesday, two weeks from the time I was originally going to call, and ended up with an extraction because of an abscessed tooth. One more thing to deal with.

Two weeks of one issue after another, one of those “hit her while she’s down” things. Here I am still dealing with the remnants of the cold, that persistent cough, a permanently bent finger that still hurts, a toothache and an extraction, and then the windshield wipers on my car won’t work.

I want to SCREAMMMMMMMMMMMMM. But I won’t.

It’s Thursday and my friend is picking me up for our weekly lunch and this week we are going to write. It’s just what I need to get over the last two weeks, to leave all that wasted and unproductive time behind me and get working again.

Monday, 15 September 2014

Understanding Chronic Fatigue

Someone asked me the other day how I could say I was tired when I did so much. Really? I was completely blown away with that person’s total lack of understanding.

Just this past week, when I went to the store, it marked the first day in the last ten that I had left the house. First it was the cold and cough and generally feeling yucky, then it was a leftover sense of fatigue, worse than usual.

I made plans to go out that Sunday because I needed groceries and more important, I needed yarn. And look where going out got me, that’s the day I tore the tendon in my little finger and now it’s permanently bent, medically known as Mallet finger.

But it got me out of the house two days in a row as a friend drove me to the walk-in clinic on Monday to have the finger looked at and we went out for lunch.

I spend my days at home, sitting in my chair for the most part, on the computer, reading or crocheting. Without these things to occupy my day I’m sure I would go crazy.

This morning I had to take the garbage out, and as I’m not walking well today because of back pain, it was a chore. I met my two neighbours outside, and since it’s a cool but sunny day, we visited, with me sitting on the edge of the garbage bin.

So now I’m back inside, sitting in my chair, my eyes heavy and feeling totally worn out, and it’s only 11:30 in the morning.

I usually start the day with coffee and my daily yogourt, while I check things on social media. That’s E-mail, Facebook and both of my blogs. I check out Amazon daily, always hoping there might be some sales for my books available for Kindle.



I like to write in the mornings when I think my concentration is better. It used to be I’d write late into the night but I’m not good for much late at night but reading, maybe playing games on the computer. I can’t write and I can’t crochet, my eyes are too blurry.

From basically lunch time until I go to bed I fill my day with whatever catches my interest. Last week I did a lot of crocheting, Christmas projects, and I wrote posts for the blog. I didn’t feel up to par because of the cold so I had to set the book aside, not enough energy to think and write an ongoing story.

I can spend hours going back and forth from Facebook, Pinterest and the number of craft sites I get daily newsletters from. Those are the days I have brain fog and can’t get my mind to concentrate, days when even the simplest crochet pattern doesn’t seem to make sense, I can’t remember words and am lost as to what my book characters are doing. Those are the days I sleep a good part of the day away.

When I go out, as I usually do every Thursday, lunch with a friend, I come home exhausted. But the day out, the social time is worth the resulting fatigue.

For the ‘normal’ person who has things to do, places to be, a busy life, it may appear I accomplish a lot. But for someone who is faced with more than fifteen hours of a day to fill, I’m not accomplishing anything compared to what I might if I had the energy.

That insensitive comment really irks me. It has taken time for my friends and family to understand, and I haven’t had to make excuses for my lack of participation. It’s so nice when you have people in your life who understand.

Like my son who checks in with me regularly, asking if I need anything and just to ask how I’m doing. He takes care of my garden, other than the watering of my pots, which is why those plants didn’t survive the whole summer. Out of sight, out of mind. He’ll pack up my planters, my gazing ball and my plant stands and store them for the winter.

My daughter who calls and asks if I need anything at the store, can she get it for me or if I want to go, she’ll pick me up. I can shop better when she picks me up, but then she also packs my groceries and carries them in the house.

Getting dressed to go out is an effort and you have no idea how much energy it takes to walk out to my car, lift the walker in and get in the car. I need a rest before I even start the motor. I hate heading out to run errands with my eyes feeling heavy and my body weak.  It is such a luxury to be picked up at my door and not have to drive.

And then there’s my writing buddy, my Thursday lunch date. She picks me up and always asks if there’s any place I need to go while we’re out. Sometimes we’ll go to a store I’ve wanted to get to but haven’t managed it when groceries would have been my main focus. She’s always good for a stop at Staples, but that’s a dangerous place for two paper lovers like us.

I’ve joked for years about living a half life, needing to rest before a day of activity and crashing the day after. It was true, but at the same time I was managing to have days of activity. Since my relapse last year that half life looks good and I wish I had the energy to do what I managed to do back then.

So here it is, after 1 o’clock in the afternoon and all I’ve done today is put the garbage out and write this blog. I’m tired, bone tired, and I know a nap may feel good but it won’t make the fatigue go away. Good thing though, my back is better, because I rubbed it with Voltaren gel, or because I put on the magnet bracelet I forgot yesterday after my bath?


Maybe I’ll have a bite of lunch and a short nap. I’d like to do some crocheting later, too many unfinished projects to complete. Whatever gets you through the day, right?

Brain Fog



When I was writing my blog for the A-Z Blog Challenge, I chose “T” is for tree as my topic because they were going to cut down the tall tree in my yard next week.

I had a particularly bad moment, and have lived it twice that day. Brain Fog. I think it’s a case of brain fog, of the word search variety. I was trying to talk about having the ugly tree stump left after they cut the tree down, but could not remember the word ‘stump’ no matter what I did. I called it a root base, and knew it was wrong, knew there was a word for what I was describing, but couldn’t come up with it.

At the end of the blog I mentioned seeing pictures of how trees were made into fairy houses and searched on Pinterest for a picture. Well, I found a picture and it had a caption. ‘Fairy House made out of a tree stump’.

STUMP. Stump was the elusive word I’d been searching my addled brain for, and couldn’t find. I went back and made some corrections in the blog, thinking how much easier it read, how much more sense it made when I used the correct word.

Unfortunately, not all episodes of brain fog are so easily resolved. A recent craft project has made me want to do something arty. I don’t have a good set up for painting and had something else in mind. For further inspiration I went back to Pinterest. The empty search box stared back at me. What was that word for the type of art I was interested in? I can’t remember. I feel like it’s on the tip of my tongue, but I can’t find it.

I searched “Sculpture’. Not what I wanted and though searching through various boards was inspirational, it was not what I was seeking. I tried ‘Embellishments’, not that either. I can picture it in my head, can almost see the ward, but it escapes me.

And with that frustration any energy I had to start some art project has been defeated. It’s just that easy to change a positive mood into a negative, as once again, my brain has let me down. Now I feel no inspiration, no creative energy, and no desire to do anything.




Sunday, 14 September 2014

Tres Fatigue



I cancelled out on plans yesterday because I just didn’t feel up to going out and sitting about socializing. People don’t understand how really tiring it is to talk to people, to keep track of multiple conversations, to sit upright and pay attention.

I’ve had a rough week and I just wanted to stay home, wanted it enough I passed up on the barbecued steak my son has promised me all summer. Social time with strangers is stressful, but just because its family doesn’t mean it’s any easier.

My son dropped in with the kids and we had a visit her, after which I had a nap. I have plans for today, though the way I’m feeling I want to cancel.

I usually shower or bathe at night as the exertion, combined with the heat of the water, leaves me exhausted. A better feeling before going to bed than going out. But I wasn’t up to it last night.

I’ve showered and now, as I write this, my head is pounding, my eyes are heavy and I need to rest. I knew it was a bad idea to shower before I went out but I didn’t have any choice. Why does something so necessary and so everyday cause my day to be ruined and lost. I’m feeling the brain fog taking over.

Soon I’ll have to get dressed, walk out to my car, load the walker, drive to my friends and meet all my old neighbours and pretend I want to be there. It all seems too much and it’s much easier to just stay home.


And really, I would like to be there, to meet with some friends, but not when I can barely keep my head up. I’m going to take a couple of advil and lie down, maybe a miracle will occur and I’ll feel better when I get up.

Saturday, 13 September 2014

Personality Changes



I recognize now that I am so much more than whom I perceived myself to be. I’ve done reading, self-help exercises and all that stuff, and understand how I got to this point in my life. I wish I’d been strong enough to make some better decisions; instead I seemed to rebound, from one situation to another, never looking at the future, never thinking of what I needed.

And what I have to wonder now, is how much of my thinking, my behaviour, was influenced or affected by my disease. I wasn’t always so sad and serious, was I? When did I start feeling so worthless? I know depression played its part, and maybe the antidepressants helped for awhile. But I couldn’t handle the dreams. They were too intertwined with the real parts of my life and it got so I didn’t know what was real and what wasn’t.

When did my personality change? Were the changes the result of what I was experiencing, or were they caused by the numerous lesions in my brain?

I didn’t recognize or consider this until much later. Cognitive changes were not even on my road map, I was all about the physical, what I could see and feel.

My reaction to the earlier MRI was fear. Fear of losing my true self, the person I was. Fear of losing my memories. Somehow, in my mind, I equated losing my memories, losing my memory as losing me. I began to write the family stories, what I knew and remembered of each member of the family, at least those who were dead and gone. I wrote details as I remembered them, and stories that shouldn’t be forgotten.

I became obsessed that my grandchildren not forget who I was, that they would have memories of me that they would cherish. I loved to cook and often baked with the girls, so a cookbook of my favourite recipes, recipes we’d made together, seemed perfect. Scrapbooking was all the rage so I started taking all my tried and true recipes and put them into scrapbook format. I have the original, and made photocopies for each of the grandchildren. I bought them each a binder, did a fancy cover page, and organized the recipe pages in sections, each page protected in a plastic sleeve.

The kids loved cooking with me and I took photos and added those to the new recipes we were trying. As events occurred, birthdays, holidays, and such, I found new recipes to try and record for the book. I started adding anecdotal notes, making it even more personal. When I began there were four grandkids, but not long after I started this project, there were two more. That was some mad photocopying to make copies for the newest family members.

The problem with starting something like this is keeping it up. It was a make work project, and I was setting myself up to fail. Even now, I have a file of recipes to organize into pages for our books, and completed pages to photocopy. My plan to give the kids new pages every year at Christmas has stalled.

I don’t need the emotions that plague me because I feel I’ve failed them, I don’t need a reminder that I am no longer an able person.


Thursday, 11 September 2014

Flyers and My Shopping Lists



Today is Thursday, the day the newspaper is delivered with its array of store flyers, and all the bargains for the coming week. I have a bit if a ritual where the flyers are concerned. Because I have some memory issues, I make a list for each store of anything and everything I might be interested in, so I can make an informed decision on where to shop.

This habit began when I lost the energy to run multiple errands at any one time. I’m good for maybe 2 stops, so I have to make the most of each one.

As I was cleaning up yesterday I found three shopping lists for the past few weeks, and realized I had not been in any of the stores on my list. Actually, I realized I had not really been in a grocery store for a good shopping in almost a month.

A week ago my daughter picked up groceries for me, and this past Sunday we went to Walmart, because I needed more than just groceries. I’ve had a cold so my get-up-and-go, got up and went, and I’ve relied on the help of others.

The lists aren’t important, as I’ve been able to get what I need. The lists that are never used are just another reminder of how I’ve adapted my life to my disease.

And here’s the connect...because I’m not out every day, I forget to water my pots outside the door. They’ve been struggling but after this recent drought, I’m afraid there was no recovery possible, the plants were done for. Two weeks ago I saw a garden flyer, and added fall mums to my list, to replace my near dead petunias. I never got to the store.

On a higher note, I was coming back from the doctor on Monday after having my injured finger looked at, when my friend and I stopped at the store so I could get my mums.


Sometimes you just have to grab onto the moment, and get it done. Sometimes you have to persevere, mind over matter, and not give in to the fatigue. I may have been tired that night and into the next day, but when I walk out my door, I have beautiful yellow blooms to greet me.

Noodle



Years ago when my children were small, I had what I call a choking spell…while eating spaghetti. It was scary at the time, but by swallowing water, whatever it was cleared and I was okay. “Noodle” became our code, for whenever this happened. If they saw me stop eating, pause, and reach for something to drink, they would ask “Noodle?” and I would nod. They’d wait until I gave the okay, or get me more to drink if needed.

This was not really what you’d call a choking spell, because my airway was never blocked, and I could breathe fine. I swallow, and the food sticks in my esophagus, like the mechanism for moving the food into my stomach has stopped working at the back of my throat. If I drink enough, I can wash it down and continue eating. The sticking part is above the spot where I could choke so I’ve never been in any real danger.

But, just because I’m not gasping for breath does not mean it doesn’t scare me. At the very least, it’s an uncomfortable feeling. My neurologist doesn’t call this choking either; he says most MS patients with swallowing difficulties choke on fluids, not solids.

I have found that this happens more frequently when I am with other people, because I am talking and eating, and maybe not paying enough attention to chewing and swallowing. And maybe, when I’m really tired I need to be more careful.

Funny, after all these years, and many of those years where we’ve lived apart, my children are still quick to pick up on the signs and jump to my aid. What can I say, they’re great kids.



Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Elevated Blood Pressure



One summer, prior to the time I began my downhill slide, I suffered from sporadic bouts of elevated blood pressure. I could feel the difference in my body, the pounding, the increased shortness of breath, and the headaches. If I was in a store, as most of these ‘bouts’ occurred with activity, I would check my blood pressure using one of those machines you see in and around the pharmacies. The reading, even when I sat for a few minutes to offset the activity, was always elevated far above my norm.

Was this going to be a new problem for me, I wondered. Did I need to worry about stroke on top of everything else?

The episodes were often enough to be of concern, but not so frequent as to cause panic. So, as is my usual, I watched it for a few weeks before I went to the doctor. In the office my blood pressure was elevated, but my doctor chose not to jump into treatment. She’d had an MS patient with the same thing, but she got treated for her elevated BP. When her blood pressure dropped to her normal levels she bottomed out because she was on medication to lower a blood pressure that was no longer elevated.


My spells lasted about a month that summer, and have never returned. Every time I have my BP checked its well within normal limits. Just another one of those MS things to keep life interesting.

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Paroxysmal Symptoms of MS



Paroxysmal symptoms of Ms are the sudden onset of a neurological symptom that may last seconds to minutes, repeating a few to many intervals per day. They may present as spasms, numbness, visual disturbances, a tic in the eyelid, or difficulty swallowing, just to name a few.

There are factors that may trigger these sensations, like fatigue, sudden change in position, temperature change, sensory stimulation such as touch and more.

Here is a link if you want to read more about this strange symptom.


I’ve had that annoying tic in my eyelid, always the right eye, same side as my facial numbness.

And I’ve had bouts of blurry vision. Like the other day when I sat down to write and had to strain to read what was on the screen. I gave it up and went to formatting, adding manual page breaks at the end of chapters, preparing my latest book for publication on Amazon. Some times when my eyes play funny I crochet, so long as the pattern is simple and the colours are light. I have trouble when I crochet with dark colours because I can’t tell one stitch from another.

My eye doctor once told me that people with MS had difficulty distinguishing colours. Like if you had a plaid, you might have trouble matching colours within the weave. I figure this is why I wear so many solid colours, but then I always did favour black.

If you have a number of these strange symptoms plaguing you throughout the day, it can be tiring, adding to your fatigue by dragging your attention from whatever is happening, or whatever you’re doing, back to your disease. Eventually, they just become part of your life, sudden annoying reminders that you have a neurological condition.

I do believe that if the symptoms are new, and occur in a cluster, it can be a sign of a relapse, and you should contact your doctor to discuss it.

Like I said before, weird and unusual.






Friday, 5 September 2014

Weird and Unusual



Weird and unusual could be the name for MS. It is a disease with so many symptoms, that no two patients present the same. I have symptoms that have been with me since the beginning, and others that come and go, just to make life interesting.

One of the strangest sensations I’ve had is a feeling of wet. Yep, you read that right. I would walk across the kitchen floor and feel like I had walked through a puddle. My poor cat, he took some blame for this in the beginning. I would check the floor, find it clean and dry, and realize this was just another one of those MS things.

Not only did I feel this sensation when walking, it would happen when I sat down. I can’t tell you the number of times I’d sit down in a chair only to jump to my feet because I thought someone had spilled something on the chair. I’d wipe my hand across the surface, find it dry, and sit. I had to check, each and every time, just in case there actually was a spill. Annoying, for sure, but it was just part of my life. I haven’t had that sensation for awhile, so I wonder if it occurred more often when I was working, and in a constant state of fatigue.

Have you ever gotten those spasms in your feet where your big toe goes in one direction and the other four toes another. It’s like a cramp, sometimes irritating, other times extremely painful. I found it best to just wait it out, the spasm never lasts long. If it was too painful, I’d try to stand my foot on a solid, colder type floor. So the bathroom or kitchen floor rather than a carpeted bedroom.

From the beginning, and to this day, I have no feeling in the outer aspect of my left thigh.

Here’s one of the weirdest. I see…let me rephrase that, I have the sensation of seeing or feeling bugs. At least I think its bugs. I can be sitting in my chair and think I see a bug scurry across the table or on the bed when I’m reading at night. I see that flicker of movement and quickly look, but there is never anything there. Sometimes it’s the sensation of something crawling over my arm, again no bugs. I know it’s not real, because after all these years you’d think I would have seen a bug, if that’s what it was. Since I hate spiders, this can be annoying, so I always have to check.


I think these are what are known as Paroxysmal Symptoms of MS. More on that next time.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Bladder Blues



I have been to the bathroom five times with this feeling I need to pee. Each time I sit there and…nothing. It’s not a matter of kidney failure, it’s bladder failure, or maybe retention is a better word.

I feel the need to go again, and know if I ignore the feeling, this will be the time it will happen and I’ll end up peeing my pants. So back to the bathroom I go. At least the back pain I woke up with has eased, and getting to the bathroom is not so much of a struggle.

This time I’m finally successful, something is better than nothing. But I’m uncomfortable and go to bed, try to read and end up having a nap.


I think I’m in ‘retention’, which is different than ‘urgency’ in the MS Bladder dictionary. Retention is being unable to go, not any, not at all, and urgency is a need-to-go-real-bad-right-now kind of rushed thing.

I’ve been in retention before, and the reason I feel that I’m in the grips of it again is that I have chills, ever since I peed about 2 hours ago. I cannot get warm, in spite of my fleece jacket and the fuzzy throw; I’m still cold, and shaking. I refuse to turn the furnace up, but if it doesn’t settle soon may take a warm bath to try and stop it. Yeah I know, warm bath, MS, not a good combination. That’s why I’ll put it off, try a warm cup of tea first, and have the bath later, when I can go to bed, and hopefully sleep.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Inappropriate Affect



Inappropriate Affect, or Involuntary Emotional Expression Disorder, IEED, is uncontrolled or involuntary laughter or crying. It can be a distressing and embarrassing symptom because once it starts it’s very hard to stop. It’s related to lesions in the cortex responsible for emotional control aspects. The person exhibits sudden and exaggerated expressions of emotion, laughing or crying, that may not be demonstrative of their mood at the time.

When I first visited the MS Clinic in Kingston the neurologist asked me if I’d experienced any episodes of this kind, and I had to admit I never had, but that’s changed.

I was shopping with my daughter prior to my move last summer. I had been under a lot of stress, physical and emotional, getting ready for the move. I bent over to look at something on a lower shelf and…well…I farted. It was a sudden thing and I couldn’t do anything to stop it. I’m not normally into fart humour, but I laughed, out of embarrassment, but thankfully we were alone and no one else heard.

But once I started to laugh, I couldn’t stop. I felt totally out of control, like a monster had taken over my body. The public release of body gas had only slightly embarrassed my daughter, (different generations, and different ideas of what’s appropriate) but this uncontrolled laughter had her glancing all around, making sure no one could see my inexcusable behaviour.

I could hear her telling me to stop, but there was no way I could. I had no control over it and had to wait until it stopped on its own. How do you explain something like that? People think they know the varied symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis but in reality, people know squat. There are so many irritating and annoying things that we have to put up with on a daily basis. It’s not worth discussing all of them because by the time you explain, its over and done, until the next time.

I’m my father’s daughter and I hate being embarrassed in public, so this event was distressing. Luckily for me it has never happened again.

I’ve never had the crying spell, not one that would be IEED, but I do have the fragile emotional response that can have me crying at a sad movie, commercial or photo. But that’s another story.