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Julie  Stachowiak, Ph.D.

Happiness and Multiple Sclerosis

By July 30, 2013

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No, I am not one of those people who thinks that my multiple sclerosis is a blessing. Far from it - there are things that I cannot do because of my MS and dreams that I have had to put away because of this disease.

However, that does not mean that I am an unhappy person. I can proudly say that I am one of the happiest people I know. I can find something every day (almost) to be happy about and I try to do just that.

Take a look at some of the ways that I find the joy in day-to-day life in the article below. In the meantime, what about you? Are you happy? What are your secrets to finding happiness, despite living with MS? Leave your stories and tips in the comments section below.

Read the full article: How to Be Happy Living with Multiple Sclerosis

July 31, 2013 at 12:25 pm
(1) Darcy says:

I needed this today. I’m just having one of those I’m bummed day and it’s not over my MS it’s just everything all together so thank you

July 31, 2013 at 2:59 pm
(2) Tonia says:

I can relate to this . I was diagnosed at 44 right in the “middle” of my life. At almost 49 my life has changed dramatically in the past five years. I lost my job, got divorced, and two years ago had to sell my house because it was just too much for me to take care of. My son is half-way trough college and we now live with my parents. So I find the “blessing” in the things I do still have. My son is doing really well in school and fortunately my parents had three bedrooms and a bathroom they never really used, so no this not where I expected I would be at 50, but I am very “glad” for the things I do have.

July 31, 2013 at 3:26 pm
(3) Stacy says:

I’m really trying to stay positive. I was diagnosed at 25 and I’m 27 now although I feel more 87 (no offense). I keep having a relapse every couple months with new symptoms. We’re trying to find something that works for me. I’m thankful though I have a wonderful supportive husband and a healthy baby boy who brings me joy. Please try to be happy. I know it’s so hard. . trust me I know but there is always a brighter a day, I promise.

July 31, 2013 at 5:45 pm
(4) Kara says:

If I didn’t try to stay upbeat and humorous, I think I would have less social contacts. Fewer social contacts would be devastating for me. I have my own “pity parties” every so often when no one is around. Even with so much change over 20+ years of MS, I try to find joy. I have to remain hopeful. I will not let this MonSter make me bitter!

July 31, 2013 at 9:30 pm
(5) ireneg says:

I thank my lucky stars that I did not have significant symptoms until my sixties. I was diagnosed three years ago at 66. I am disappointed that I can not run with my grandchildren. My son is reluctant to let me babysit his four year old twins because of my disability. I had planned on resuming playing golf after retirement–it never happened. And I planned to travel, Not managing as much as I hoped. After a few weeks of moping, I told my husband that he could not tell me that he felt sorry for me and that I didn’t deserve MS. Does anyone? I pushed for physical therapy, spent time at the gym, took up Tai Chi and now function as a volunteer instructor working with people with disabilities. My husband was recently diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. I did not let MS stop me and my mission is to keep PD from stopping my husband. I relish a challenge. I got more challenge than I bargained for, but as long as I can find positive outlets for my time and energy I will.

August 1, 2013 at 1:07 am
(6) Bonnie Marash says:

I agree that having MS is not a blessing but it isnt the end of the world. I have found the by finding things to be greatful for is a good start. I was diagnosed in 1987 and have always been willing to help some one else. It gives me the feeling of giving back.I also have always seen my glass as being half full and I have a marvelous support system. I feel I am truly blesses.

August 1, 2013 at 11:03 am
(7) Dulci says:

I AM one of those people that has found MS to be a (mixed) blessing. I have had it for 29 years and have lost soooo much. However, without MS I would have never developed the empathetic, spiritual, hidden talented side of myself. I could very easily mourn my memory loss, my bladder/bowel dysfunction, my loss of gate and stability, and the obvious exclusion of invites to events involving physical activity. But I have my walker, belong to a gym I frequent, participate in two clubs, and take a community class on occasion. And I even get VIP parking and assistance! It sucks, I know, but we might as well make the most of what we have left.

August 4, 2013 at 5:43 pm
(8) Pamela says:

I try to stay positive but its difficult. When I feel good, strong and happy reality will set in again, I remember that I have MS and feel terrible again.

August 11, 2013 at 6:50 pm
(9) Maureen says:

I hate MS enough for all of us.

I never saw it coming and if it left today I would really embrace life again. Mine is a painful kind and not one minute allows me to forget. I am not hateful, I squeeze as much from my day as I can. I know we all had bigger dreams for our lives than this. When I get home and meet the creator, my first words will be like ” what was that all about? Do I seem not happy, no I am about as happy as I can manage, yet no where close to what it should be. Having MS is like being a prisoner.
The joy for me will be when I get out.
Right now I’d settle for a successful treatment.

August 13, 2013 at 2:25 pm
(10) Kathy says:

I try really hard to focus on and use what I DO have, what IS available to me, not what I don’t have or is not available to me. It is very frustrating to watch others do things you used to be able to do, things that seem so simple to everyone around you. No matter how much you tell them, they don’t really understand. And, nobody wants to hear about my disease or limitations, even if I am upbeat about the explanation….it makes people uncomfortable. I am very fortunate that my family is finally grasping after three years (from my diagnosis) when I need to drop out of an activity. I am truly grateful for all the things I DO have, though….when I look around, there are so many who have less to work with. Be strong…..happiness is an attitude and a choice, and sometimes an act of the will! :-)

October 1, 2013 at 8:03 pm
(11) Dimples22 says:

When I find that I am really down about having MS, I remember what my doctor once said to me. MS is NOT ALS. I’m VERY thankful I have MS as we have a friend who died from ALS with when I was diagnosed with MS.

So, life could be much, much worse!

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