MS doesn’t stop me having inner strength

Shruti, 46, India

MS doesn’t stop me. It couldn’t stop me when I was diagnosed, even though I had very young children at the time. In fact, it made me more determined to lead a productive life, come what may. MS has given me many positives. It has shown me who my true friends are and how mentally strong I can be.

I work in a school and volunteer for the Multiple Sclerosis Society of India (MSSI), but the unpredictable pattern of good and bad days stops me from working full time. It makes me unhappy that I can’t earn enough even though I know that I can do a great job.

Problems with my bladder and a lack of sleep hinders my life, especially travel. My eyes get easily strained making reading uncomfortable. Some days fatigue makes me feel totally worn out, which drags me down. A nap or a rest can help as well as calming my over-active mind by doing some gentle breathing exercises and chanting my prayers.

I am driven by willpower and a sense of duty. I think it’s important to be your own mental and emotional strength, to feel independent. That said, sharing my thoughts, apprehensions and anxiety with close friends has helped me cope.

The satisfaction and inner peace I feel when someone affected by MS tells me they felt good after speaking with me provides great solace.