Rips, anyone?

I knew that my family must be told soon for two reasons.  First of all, I didn’t want them to be surprised if they got a call one day that I was in the hospital.  The second reason was to minimize the guilt for not having told them already.  I knew the guilt would still be there, but I needed to face it.  I called up everyone one in my family, which wasn’t hard as the only close ones were my brother and his family and my parents.  I arranged for us to get together for Brunch at a local restaurant named Rips.  It’s no longer there, by the way.

Everyone arrived and we all pretended that it was just like any other brunch, even though we all knew differently, especially since my family never got together for a meal unless it was a holiday or some other special occasion.  After we had all been to the buffet at least once, I took a deep breath and told them that I had MS.  They were surprised of course.  I don’t know what they imagined that I might have to say, but I’m pretty sure this had never entered their minds.  I got the expected “Why didn’t you tell us sooner,” but due to the serious nature of the announcement, the guilt trip was cut short with other pertinent questions.  What exactly was MS?  What was the treatment?  What was the prognosis?  I’m sure that there were others that I don’t remember anymore.

I told them what I knew about MS, including that I would be taking Avonex, and that there really was no prognosis except it was a good sign that I had only had sensory symptoms so far.  However with MS, everything can change in a second.  Since all of my symptoms had been sensory to date, this was a good sign.  However, MS is very unpredictable and everything can change in a second.

The only one at the  table with any experience with MS at all was my mom, who had worked with a woman who at age 50 was in a wheelchair and in a nursing home because of MS.  Picturing her daughter this way was something she had never even thought to imagine.  I was young when we knew her, around ten or eleven, so I don’t have a very clear memory for which I am very thankful.

We finished brunch and each went our separate ways after some hugs and promises made to keep everyone updated.  Unfortunately I am not very good at that, especially when I don’t view things as serious.   A few more guilt trips were in my future.



  1. Herrad said,

    February 12, 2010 at 11:29 pm

    Came to visit you via Nadja’s blog.
    Reading your post reminded me how scary it was getting in touch with family and friends to tell them about my diagnosis.
    Keep warm.
    Have a good weekend.

    • Debbie said,

      February 13, 2010 at 12:23 am

      It’s quite a scary thing isn’t it. I’m not even so sure why it is so scary. I think it’s because saying it out loud to family and friends makes it more real somehow. Also every time you have to answer a question it reminds you of what might be in store for you and that by no means is something people with mS want to constantly dwell on. At least not me. I’m just finally coming around to accepting my uncertain future. Take care. Debbie

  2. blindersoff said,

    February 13, 2010 at 4:59 am

    Hi Debbie

    I found my way here, the same way Herrad did. Reading your posts brought back memories when I was first diagnosis. MS’ers can relate to what you are about to experience. First I want to welcome you to the blogosphere, I for one am very grateful for the blogosphere because the support from fellow blogging MS’ers is the best. It definitely helps to know others who are experiencing the MS roller coaster ride. Stay positive.

    Welcome to our MS blogsphere world, I will link your blog.

    • Debbie said,

      February 13, 2010 at 6:13 am

      Hi, there has already been a bit of a roller coaster ride. The problem is I’m not one of the people that like roller coasters. I enjoy adventure but roller coasters scare the s*** out of me. Thank you for the welcome and I can’t wait to look at your blog. I will link your blog also. Thank you for the encouragement!

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