a tale of two attitudes

16Nov13

Attitude is everything.

At my MS fundraiser, during one of our brief band breaks, I was approached by two women who told me they’d been diagnosed with MS over a decade ago. Their attitudes were poles apart.

They both appeared to be middle-aged, 50-something. One of them, you’d never know she had a chronic disease. She told me she plays tennis regularly, that she never lets her disease slow her down. She was bubbly, smiling, energetic.

The other one talked about how she is always tired. There is never enough sleep in this world, she told me. She’s lucky to occasionally be able to get out to fundraising events like mine. She radiated negativity and bitterness. I talked with her, but I really didn’t want to spend time with her. (Luckily, I had the alibi of “gotta get back on stage with the band!”)

As someone who strives to be an advocate in the MS community, this served as a clear lesson to me. If you’re talking with someone newly diagnosed, what do you want to tell them, not only with your words, but with your behavior? With your expression? With your attitude?

Now, I know enough about MS that I’ve figured out how to create a positive life around my disease; but for those who don’t have my advantage, if they encounter only the second woman, how are they going to feel?

Reinforcement to put on my happy face at all times. 🙂

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3 Responses to “a tale of two attitudes”

  1. You said it well.

    • Thanks! You know, I was in spin class at the gym this morning, and even among people I know (where you’d expect several of us to chat before class), so many were absorbed in their phones with dour looks on their faces. I got there and engaged the few folks I know who *didn’t* have e-umbilical cords in front of them… goes to show that for me, MS has been more of a blessing, since it’s given me goals, it’s given me perspective, and it’s brought me closer to those who really matter. We joke about “first-world problems”, but some people really *do* get caught up too much in their “first world problems”, I’m afraid… it’s unfortunate. No one else can make our lives fun and meaningful other than… US! 🙂


  1. 1 A Positive Attitude Helps - MCS Gal

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