I wasn’t really sure what to expect. I would either be told that I had new lesions and had to go on stronger medication, or something else altogether. The neurologist went through the normal tests: my reflexes, the strength in my body, my eyesight. She had me attempt to walk across the floor heel to toe.
One of these days, I will be able to do this, but I only managed one step without falling over. It’s become a goal of mine that, one day, I will walk across the whole floor of the doctor’s office walking heel to toe; but that’s for another day.
We went through what I had been doing to better my life: I’ve changed my eating habits to a Paleo diet, it’s been over a year since I quit smoking. I do a three times a week exercise routine. I walk everywhere I can and manage up to seven kilometers a day. I had started doing a meditation routine and doing self-Reiki treatments.
She smiled and said I could sit up. My partner was on my right and my mother was beside him. We waited to hear what she had to say.
I was surprised that the computer screen wasn’t up showing what the inside of my head looked like. Though the MRI images were a little frightening, I always thought that they looked like a galaxy inside my head, the dark sky dotted with stars and planets. When I looked at the MRI, I felt like an explorer in my own head.
The neurologist smiled when she said “There are no new lesions. The Copaxone is working so we’ll continue with that.”
I wasn’t sure what to expect, but it wasn’t that. I always assume the worst going into these appointments, that way I will have less to overcome when I have to confront the outcome.
I am so used to fighting, battling, climbing every hill, scaling every obstacle that I sometimes forget that great things can happen to me. Thankfully, life gives me a reminder every now and again.
I was filled with light in that moment. I let out a breath I must have been holding for days, it seemed to go on forever. I don’t remember what I said, probably something along the lines of “That’s great” or “That’s fabulous.” I was in a daze of happiness.
She went to get the resident doctor and she came to speak to me. She went through the results again and my mother asked to look at the MRI. When she turned it on, the screen showed the galaxy contained within me. Only this time, it wasn’t so frightening.
My partner Michael said it was no surprise about the results. I was better than I had been and getting stronger. There were still some issues to deal with including fatigue, brain fog, slurring of speech, balance issues. However, these had become par for the course.
What I learned that day was that I didn’t have to fight myself all the time; I just had to live the best life I could. I learned that it was okay to be thankful for my life as it was, that good things can happen despite, or because of, everything.
I was thankful that my mother and Michael were there with me at what was the best appointment I’ve had in years. We were all smiling and I could feel the joy overflowing out of me.
Michael dropped us off at Rideau Centre. We walked into the mall when I stopped my mother. “Mom, wait. Happy dance?”
And so, in the middle of a mall hallway, my mother and I shared a happy dance because we had so much to be thankful about.