Tag Archives: Jack Osbourne

Fight Back Or Be Damned

fight back or be damnedOne of my pet hates is people with chronic illnesses being urged to ‘fight back’ by others who have no idea what they’re talking about.

Am I supposed to feel better when someone looks at me with sad eyes, grasps my hand and tells me, ‘oh, you’re so brave, I just know you can fight this thing.’

Perhaps the media is partly to blame, when every third-rate ‘celebrity’ who is diagnosed with anything is featured in trashy magazines claiming they will fight back, not let it beat them, blah, blah, blah. Ironically, they usually end their not-so-exclusive interview with a coy plea for privacy.

How exactly am I supposed to fight back against MS? It isn’t going to go away. Oh sure, I could pay thousands for quack cures, immerse myself in healing waters, start meditating, follow a Beat MS Diet, howl at the moon. And yes, I probably would feel slightly better, just as anyone without MS would also feel slightly better following a strict, healthy regime. Isn’t it better for us to adapt to our new lives with MS rather than fighting the unfightable? It’s not about giving in to it, it’s about getting on with it.

There is a creeping sense of a hidden agenda embedded within this call to fight back. Anyone with an illness must resist being ‘different’ at all costs. We must strive to regain our ‘normality’, that which is acceptable to mainstream society. We must fight back against anything that marks us as being outside the socially acceptable norm and if we appear not to be fighting back, then we’re obviously not trying hard enough. How often do we hear, ‘Oh, she fought a brave battle’ or ‘she just gave up the fight.’

This kind of pressure only makes life with MS more difficult than it already is. The only thing I’m fighting back against is the discrimination that comes with having MS. Being sacked from work because of it. Struggling to find a new job because of it. The constant blank, disbelieving faces when I try and fail to describe overwhelming fatigue and the reality of living with a mostly invisible illness.

In the meantime, I’m sticking with Jack Osbourne’s philosophy – Adapt and Overcome. Interestingly, it’s his family who talk about fighting back, not him. Anyone who wants to make me feel guilty for not fighting back hard enough, stumble for a week in my shoes, then come and talk to me.

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If I Had to Write a Round Robin Letter….

Don’t you just dread these landing on your doormat at Christmas? A smug, boasting, hearty letter detailing every single thing that some random person you met years ago did over the last 12 months? Well, in the jolly spirit of Christmas, here’s one I would have sent, if I could have been bothered (abridged version):

Well hello there stranger!

What can I say, it’s been an awesome year for our little family. I have some sad news though. Our highly-talented mouse-catcher, Mr Snuffles passed away in January. We held a very moving and well-attended ceremony and he is now resting under the bush in the garden. The candle-lit vigil was just beautiful (picture attached!). To ease our grief, we adopted a new, gorgeous little tabby who has adjusted so well into our loving home!

The Teenager is doing brilliantly at school! We just don’t know how he manages to combine all that schoolwork with playing for both the rugby and football teams too! Phew! And where do kids get their appetites from?? He’s growing up so fast and I just can’t take enough photographs of all his incredible achievements. We’re running out of space for his trophies, and we just know ┬áhe’ll be playing rugby for the country soon – watch this space!

I have had a little health problem. It’s MS. You know, that celebrity illness – Jack Osbourne has it and we’re so proud of the spotlight he has shone on this for us. We’re in the company of giants! I’ve been resting up and taking it easy, but watch out world, when I’m back to my old self again – here I come!! I may just take up skydiving and firewalking, so watch out for the clips on YouTube. I’ll be famous! So keep this letter in a safe place, ha ha!

We also painted the bathroom this summer. Don’t Farrow & Ball do some stunning colours? We spent many a happy weekend choosing the best one and are so pleased with the result. I have had so many lovely compliments. And our toilet brush matches perfectly! As well as that, I am also still baking my legendary brownies and carrot cake – people just can’t get enough!

Well, I’ll wrap it up now. So, so sad we haven’t managed to meet up this year. Or last year. I’m just so blessed you can share in our awesome lives.

Merry Christmas y’all (My funny American relatives say this and I just think it’s the sweetest thing!!!)


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