You have your whole life ahead of you

As a young person I was always told, “You have your whole life ahead of you... You can do anything you put your mind to!” However, after receiving my MS diagnosis I started to doubt that this could ever be true for me. While everyone else around me continued on with their life pursuing their goals and dreams, I felt that my life was coming to a screeching halt and my dreams were slipping away. I became depressed and worried a lot about my future.

Would I be able to support myself? Would I find the right job with an understanding boss? Would I ever get married? Who would want to be with me? The questions in my head seemed endless. I got to the point where I would even tell myself, “It’s wrong for you to even think about having a committed relationship!”

As my mental state worsened so did my physical. Fatigue crept in and hindered my motivation. Looking back, I see how important it was for me to have encouraging people around me. It helped me to think positively and gave me the strength I needed to push through bouts of depression and ill thoughts.

I’ve said before that I might never have regained hope without attending support groups, or without my doctors being willing to experiment to find the right therapy and provide me with resources to help me understand this disease. I believe it is vital to have a strong collaborative medical team. For me this meant taking the time to build a team of professionals that includes my primary care physician, neurologist, chiropractor, acupuncturist, physical therapist and a good pharmacist. It’s important that I have professionals who are passionate about seeing me through – practitioners who are willing to listen, empower me, and allow me to participate in my treatment plan.

Not every day is perfect – chronic fatigue is still something that I deal with daily – but as I mentioned in my speech at the National MS Society Leadership Conference, I truly believe that the rest of our lives can be the best of our lives. I get to tour and play music all over the world for a living! And I’ll be celebrating my fifth year wedding anniversary this March with my beautiful wife, Portia who I love and adore :-)

— Anthony Jones
7 Appreciate this

The National MS Society