Sick of Being Sick MAG

October 13, 2008
By Michael Moser, Flower Mound, TX

I woke up this morning like you, took a shower, and brushed my teeth while planning my homework. I got a phone call around noon and spent an hour of joy telling my girlfriend how much I love her. I ate a bowl of ramen, started my homework, and took my pills. Three, actually, to combat the side effects of the shot I injected myself with last night. Why, you ask, did I do that? Simple: I am a teenager living with multiple sclerosis, or MS, and I take my shots knowing that if I don’t, my body’s defenses will destroy me.

Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system attacks the nerves and restricts the signals from flowing in the brain, if it ­allows them to transmit at all. It attacks seemingly ­randomly, from one area to the next, anything from sensory perception to control over legs and arms. Though the disease took away control of half my face and reduced control over half my body, I consider ­myself lucky. It could have targeted my respiratory or ­circulatory systems.

Ironically, MS is most common in older people. Though rarely fatal, MS can steal your life away in a coma, or drag you into a vegetative state. Breathing through tubes, living only thanks to machines. Living, but not living. A fate worse than death. A fate only staved off by the injections I administer every week, which serve to slow the disease though not cure it. Did I mention I hate needles?

When I heard my diagnosis, to put it simply, I was crushed by my sickness. Crushed by the idea of such an uncontrollable disease looming over me, able to strike at any time without mercy or pity. Crushed by the thought of my bright future now dimmed prematurely. Crushed by the terror of my own body turning against me, and me not being able to do anything to stop it. I couldn’t help myself or stop this disease from taking over. I was paralyzed by my fate.

But people may pass me today and think nothing except Why is that guy wearing all black in the Texas summer? I don’t look sickly, and people balk when I tell them I have MS. The same disease is there, still incurable and malicious, but now I am a brighter, ­happier individual, boldly looking to the future and living the high life. What happened?

It’s simple. I was sick of being sick.

For years I knew I could not change my fate, yet I dwelt on it. I still do, sometimes. It’s human nature. But I realized there is more to life than fear. Worrying about things you can’t control only wastes time. What kind of life would you rather live? One fraught with worry about impending doom only to see your fears realized after an eternity of dying. Or a life lived in the moment, reveling in the here and now, with eyes full front, ­appreciating the past and accepting that there is an end to every party.

It’s quite simple, really. Live in the moment. Don’t worry about what you can’t control. My own life is full of imminent dangers, potential horrors, and fates even worse than death, as is yours. Yet some things will happen, regardless of how much thought we put into them. What’s the point of using life to fear death? Enjoy the life given to you, while you have it, and know that when you die you have lived a life worth living, using every breath to do, not just to think.

My happiness still prevails. I have loved and continue to love. I laugh. I smile. I walk with a spring in my step. I revel in my life, despite my affliction. I cherish the time given to me, knowing that it could be cut short at any moment. I live despite my disease; in fact, you could say I treasure my life all the more, knowing that time only comes once and is gone in a flash. I savor my life while I still can. To do any less, in my opinion, is to live by dying. Which sounds ­better to you?



Similar Articles

JOIN THE DISCUSSION

This article has 106 comments.


on Jun. 11 2010 at 9:04 pm
riley1516 PLATINUM, Lake Zurich, Illinois
26 articles 2 photos 50 comments

Favorite Quote:
Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” -Howard Thurman

Great story.  I feel like I can relate. I have cystic fibrosis, a terminal lung disease and just knowing that I cant live past the age of forty even is awful.  And I too, am sick of being sick. My prayers are with you, stay strong and keep up the positive attitude!

on Jun. 11 2010 at 3:11 pm
still-a-novice BRONZE, Balderdash, Illinois
4 articles 0 photos 25 comments

Favorite Quote:
Attention people! This is life here! This is not a rehersal. I repeat, Life is not a Rehersal!

That was awesome. I can't believe you have that. I feel bad for you, but like you said, it's more important to go out and live your life. Don't spend it dwelling over anything. I hope you continue writing.

on May. 20 2010 at 2:46 pm
FireWhiskey SILVER, Durango, Colorado
9 articles 0 photos 11 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Dreams are only Dreams, unless you do something about them, than they're life"
~By me

Wow... Wow. I've known people who have MS and I know people who have died with MS. None of which had your courage and willingness to keep on living. Keep hope.

on Apr. 29 2010 at 3:31 pm
forgottenpenname GOLD, Troy, Michigan
12 articles 0 photos 147 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Carpe diem."

That was amazing. My aunt has MS too, but I think she's more on the other side of the spectrum from you... I hope they find a cure, just for you. In the meantime, I'm praying for you. :)

Everhart said...
on Apr. 28 2010 at 9:33 pm
Everhart, Boston, Massachusetts
0 articles 0 photos 29 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I am a fat girl, trapped in a normal girl's body."

Wow. That's amazing. Keep fighting - I'm rooting for you!

on Apr. 28 2010 at 8:45 pm
thisisascreenname BRONZE, Sugarloaf, California
4 articles 0 photos 32 comments
Wow. I think you are a hero! I really mean it. some people don't realize the fact that if what they want is to live a great life, they have to start by doing instead of just wanting and planning. You have really inspired me and i think that your writing is AMAZING. 

mikky said...
on Apr. 28 2010 at 7:57 am
wow this is very inspiring. i dont have a desease like urs but  i can relate to you because i too have a severe medical problems and it can be scary to have ur own body betray u. but ur rite u have to live and not worry about stuff u cant control and enjoy life while u still can...thanks for sharing ur brave story :)

on Apr. 6 2010 at 5:13 pm
starlight26 GOLD, Miramar, Florida
11 articles 7 photos 174 comments

Favorite Quote:
*life isnt about pretending to be something you're not. It about being who you are and finding someone
who loves every bit of it."

"Life's tradegy is that we get old too soon and wise too late"

Inspiring and Beautiful!! Thanks for sharing!! I think you taught us all something great about life :)

on Apr. 6 2010 at 4:45 pm
Lost-In-Life GOLD, Whitby, Other
11 articles 0 photos 299 comments

Favorite Quote:
It's never to late, if it weren't for the last minute many things would never get done!

Yes! This is something I realized too (though not in such a painful manner, I'm sorry you are going through this) and I've been trying to live like that. This article inspired me even more and I hope it inspired others. Thanks for sharing your story!

 


on Apr. 6 2010 at 10:46 am
lekstarr BRONZE, Berea, Kentucky
2 articles 0 photos 3 comments

The truth of everything you say in this piece is astounding. It's so easy to forget how little time we have, and it's so easy to dwell on the bad things.

I don't really know how to explain how powerful I found this article. It's great, keep on living this way.


Iamber GOLD said...
on Mar. 15 2010 at 9:46 pm
Iamber GOLD, Smiths, Alabama
19 articles 0 photos 17 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Don't think, don't judge, just listen." - Sarah Dessen

This was amazing. I know people who wish for death, and quite honsetly, I think they should read this because they have the grace of God to keep going, however they pull out the worse in there lives and dwell. I'm at shock with how great this story truly is. Great job.

on Mar. 15 2010 at 9:05 pm
TheMaisinator BRONZE, Leeds, Maine
4 articles 0 photos 15 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Maybe we should develop a Crayola bomb as our next secret weapon. A happiness weapon. A beauty bomb. And every time a crisis developed, we would launch one. It would explode high in the air - explode softly - and send thousands, millions, of little parachutes into the air. Floating down to earth - boxes of Crayolas. And we wouldn't go cheap, either - not little boxes of eight. Boxes of sixty-four, with the sharpener built right in. With silver and gold and copper, magenta and peach and lime, amber and umber and all the rest. And people would smile and get a little funny look on their faces and cover the world with imagination."
~Robert Fulghum

You are such an inspiration. I want to comment but I'm at a loss for words. Congratulations. Keep up the good work. 'Nuff said.

mandygale77 said...
on Mar. 15 2010 at 6:13 pm
So inspirational! Great job! LOL, it makes me feel stupid because I was upset over having reactive arthritis. Really amazing!

on Feb. 21 2010 at 8:45 am
krisssss PLATINUM, Nyack, New York
22 articles 18 photos 28 comments
Your prespective on life is completly true and I hope alot of people, including myself, can follow in your perspective. I pray for you that you'll be okay living with MS. Keep writing; and live your life to the fullest each day. I hope this piece is read around the county, because every teen should her your story. Good luck!

on Jan. 30 2010 at 9:19 pm
EstherSora GOLD, Woodside, New York
17 articles 1 photo 5 comments
WOW that was really amazing. Thanks for sharing that great story of overcoming your sickness, what an inspiration!

Rayanne SILVER said...
on Jan. 30 2010 at 9:16 pm
Rayanne SILVER, Ely, Nevada
6 articles 4 photos 14 comments

Favorite Quote:
'Careful Wat you wish for' And "Things may not always be what they seem'

sorry if i misspelt anything, spelling is not a very sterong subject with me.

Rayanne SILVER said...
on Jan. 30 2010 at 9:15 pm
Rayanne SILVER, Ely, Nevada
6 articles 4 photos 14 comments

Favorite Quote:
'Careful Wat you wish for' And "Things may not always be what they seem'

wow, that is a very, very good piece, it made me relize how important life is, and to accept what i have, and to wish luck to people like you, and to stop and think, why do people have to go thdrough this?

on Jan. 30 2010 at 8:44 pm
LihuaEmily SILVER, North Kingstown, Rhode Island
7 articles 3 photos 199 comments

Favorite Quote:
"It is said that there's no such thing as a free lunch. But the universe is the ultimate free lunch." -Alan Guth

Oh yes. Go you. I know just how this feels and you are going to LIVE LIFE!

on Jan. 30 2010 at 5:48 pm
sillyaardvarkabc BRONZE, Riverside, Connecticut
4 articles 0 photos 63 comments
I admire your courage so much. I can barely cope with getting a flu shot. Thank you, for putting a new spin- a new perspective- on my life. I've now realised I take so much for granted, but no longer. Thanks again.

on Jan. 30 2010 at 1:44 pm
robrobrobin11 BRONZE, Concord, New Hampshire
4 articles 2 photos 25 comments
I love your message and amen to being sick of being sick. I have chronic neurological pain called RSD. I'm in pain everyday but hell , it isn't stopping me. Nice job, keep writing :)


SciArc

MacMillan Books

Aspiring Writer? Take Our Online Course!