Fear Strikes Out

For those who read and reacted to my last blog post about pushing away fear, please allow me to clarify one point.  If you are laboring under the misapprehension that I have mastered the issue of fear, I have not.  A person cannot live with an illness carrying the possible outcomes MS carries with it and sleep soundly every night.  Not possible.  The challenge, I believe, is overcoming the paralysis of living scared and go on with life.

My father and his mother battled multiple sclerosis most of their lives.    Each was confined to a wheelchair at he end.  I see an old wheelchair quietly parked in a corner almost everywhere I wander.  Even in my dreams there are rolling chairs.  I I sound obsessed, I do not believe that is the case.  The image is indelible, but it cannot stop me.  There is too much to do.  Life goes on, even from a sitting position.  I will make it work, and so will you.

There was a center fielder for the Boston Red Sox in the late 1950s named Jimmy Piersall.  Piersall suffered from bipolar disorder when little was known about the sickness.  Jimmy was just “crazy.”  He got the right help, and his team gathered around him.  Jimmy Piersall beat the disorder and went back to his game.  He found the right help and had been open and honest, and heprevailed over his fears.  Hence the name of the book and movie about him, Fear Strikes Out.

I did not get where I am overnight.  For me, finding peace took decades.  We are running a marathon.  For Nancy, who imagines lying helplessly at the bottom of the shower, do something.  I installed  strong bars on the walls of my shower.  I have a seat that folds down.  Each has saved me on occasion.  This is what I mean about the paralysis of fear.  Prevent the accident before you are lying horizontally, gargling water ‘til you choke.

I still say FDR was right.  He sat in a wheelchair for so long  and understood the limited life.  I would say he made up for it

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