Someone recently told me that I don’t have MS, and with assuredness told me that I actually have P.M.A. Stricken, choked, down-right puzzled as to why this person would say that to me after my very personal disclosure I instinctively raised my defense, building high its walls, and ready to rebuke this potentially false statement. Hesitant, however, I am to act out this defense so I look towards them, pain clearly drawn in my eyes. ‘Do you know what P.M.A. is?’ they question.
I reply, ‘No, what is P.M.A.?’
‘You suffer from a Positive Mental Attitude!’
I will not, without a doubt, ever forget this very surprising and uplifting conversation. It’s, now, roughly two weeks later and I am STILL going over it in my head and how this individual drew this about me from a mere 20 minutes of knowing me. What an impact this experience has had; one that continues to grow. I am stunned that someone was able to see my perseverance, my drive, to overcome having MS.
A large number of those I tell have the same response, ‘You’re too young!’
My answer to the congress: ‘No, I am not too young to have MS.’
To give the benefit of the doubt, I can understand this exclamation is not to tell me that I cannot possibly have MS; that I must be doing something wrong to be affected at such an age. I can understand it is a typical mode of sympathy, possibly routed from ignorance, primarily used to send along condolences without saying something that may otherwise actually be offensive, so I do appreciate the sentiment rather than feel condescended.
Today, this same P.M.A. individual said they like when I smile and when I smile at them. My father tells me, ‘Have a good day and don’t forget to let your little light shine’ – referring to the song This Little Light of Mine that I used to sing when I was young all the time (and I do mean all the time).
Hearing these positive remarks – P.M.A and like of a smile – assure me that I am indeed ‘letting my little light shine.’
I began this blog with the hope and the motivation to spread my experience with those who wish to read my words and to spread some light; for myself and for any others feeling drowned in darkness and defeat.
Going forth, I will most certainly add P.M.A. to my list of sufferings and credentials; and I will continue my education in the practice of shining positivity.