No matter how lasting or fleeting, it’s a question that we instinctively ask ourselves—myself included.
But why? Perhaps the reason many of us open the can of “why me?” is because there is so much we have yet to learn about a disease with no known cause, no early detection, no predictable path of symptoms, stages, or prognosis… and no cure. We feel desperate for information, any information, that can help us understand.
But while it might simply be an attempt to feel in control, “why me?” is the most dangerous question we can ask ourselves when experiencing adversity. In doing so, we will always turn up empty-handed and disappointed, because there is no answer. Asking this question opens a door to a spiral of self-pity and heartache as we dissect every moment of “bad luck” in our lives.
Allow yourself to feel pain and confusion. It’s healthy and valid. But as soon as that pesky why me creeps up, I think it is important to take pause and instead ask:
- Could things be worse?
- Will things be exactly this way forever?
- How can I use this setback to help other people or learn something about myself?
- What am I still grateful for?
- What good can come from this?
MS can be a blessing, you see. Maybe not in the traditional sense, and it’s certainly not what anyone dreams of experiencing… but it’s truly what you make of it.
I don’t believe I was given MS by a higher power as some sort of test. I don’t believe in luck, either.
But, I do believe I have multiple sclerosis because I can handle it. I believe I can help other people that are in the same boat and MS just happens to be the conduit. I don’t believe I am anyone special. Why should I be exempt from the cards that life deals us?
So, why not me?
This article was authored by Cat Stappas and originally published on the National Multiple Sclerosis Society’s blog, MSConnection.org, on November 15, 2019.