"How are you?"
Seems like a question that would be a reasonable one to ask right? That depends if the person asking is actually interested in your real answer. It happens frequently, someone askes "So how have you been?" and if your truthful answer is a bit longer then "Oh I've been great thanks" suddenly they aren't interested anymore and their eyes kind of glaze over. So now I am always "Great thanks". I don't know if its just fake concern and they are doing it so they appear to care but I will tell you, if you don't want to know the truth, don't ask in the first place. I will not always be 'great' and my not so great days might not be your typical bad day. If you are not prepared to hear what I really have to say then a polite smile and 'Hello.' will suffice and I am ok with that. The majority of times I'm asked "How are you?" I am truly fine, not great, not fantastic or wonderful but fine - those who really know me know when I'm not being truthful or am having a bad day just by looking at me. I've also learnt that its not the quantity of friends you have it really is the quality. Those that take the time to really ask and care despite their own problems or how busy they are with their life are those to treasure. It really is true, you know who your real friends are when you are faced with something that really is life changing. To those friends, you know who you are, I thank you, love you and cherish our friendship.
"Have you tried?"
I have been asked this more times then I can count. There are many things you can supposably do to help MS or even cure it!! I even got a Facebook message from a stranger offering to help me cure my MS...for a pretty penny of course...no idea where this person was from but I did promptly press *delete*. Were you aware that my immune system will miraculously cease its war against my Myelin Sheath if i do x, y & z? Oh but you cannot do a, b & c if you want x, y & z to work. Oh my god are you serious? Don't get me wrong, I am certainly going to be looking after myself better but I do not expect that to be a sudden cure for my MS. There are natural ways in which to manage MS, I have chosen a medical way and chose natural therapies to complement my prescribed Medication. I know what is best for me and my body, I appreciate your care and concern and the effort you may have gone to, I will not be rude but don't feel hurt if I never do as you suggest.
I am strong.
Until you have had to face something that is life changing to YOU as a person that could and possibly will change how you live your life you cannot understand 100%. I was faced with this dilemma earlier this year. I can now appreciate how others who have an autoimmune disease manage to carry on. It is not something that can be understood in a day, a week, a month or even a year. Even those closest to you do not have an understanding. You can try and explain over and over but every day is different. I just try and remain strong every day and live in the hope that one day a cure will be found. Before I was diagnosed, when I couldn't walk straight or even stay upright and I never missed a day at work I wouldn't let whatever this was beat me. I didn't know that I was already fighting my own body. I was becoming strong against MS - I was fighting it with everything I had. I will keep fighting because I am strong.
Its ok to take time for myself.
Never feel guilty for taking time out to look after yourself. I am still learning that its ok to be honest with myself and listen to what my body is telling me. If I cannot do something, don't push it until I'm broken. I've learnt this a few times now and it isn't worth the backlash that my body has in store for me afterwards. If you are dealing with an autoimmune disease that causes fatigue you really do have to take time out for yourself and if people don't understand that, its their problem not yours. If you are not looking after yourself, how can you expect to be their for those who are there for you.