Thursday, January 10, 2013

In the moment

Kelly Nieuwejaar
It’s important to me that I portray what’s real, but let’s face it, real can be a drag. There are some situations in life when we have a hard time and things don’t end with a double rainbow and a room full of puppies. But that’s everyone’s life, right? Everyone has his or her own “stuff.” Call it seasonal affective disorder or the blues or post-holiday let down, but I’m just depressed. And when I feel like this, MS is enemy number one. I guess it should be all the time … but at times like this it's really in my face, and I'm not even the one with MS!

My husband Khoren is rarely down. How can that be? It must be some sort of super power. Now that I think about it, all the people with MS that I’ve met possess this inner strength that confounds me. MS is obviously not something they're happy about; I get that. But they must know something I don't.

So, I went straight to the source for answers. Maybe some input from Khoren would help me get over my funk. I asked him how it was that nothing seems to get to him – particularly his MS. I waited anxiously for his sage advice. And, I waited. Finally, he broke the silence. “It's just my mindset. I don't have control over it, so I don't let it get me down.”

I wondered, “How can I purchase such a mindset?” It certainly doesn't come that easily to me. It kind of got me thinking about mindfulness and living in the moment, which is really how I think Khoren lives his life the way he does. This reminded me of a really wonderful book I own, Tao Te Ching. Every time I open it I feel more at peace with how things are and why things are. Maybe it could do the same for you?

Kelly Nieuwejaar lives in southern Maine with her husband, Khoren.


  1. I can relate to everything you are going through. My husband has such a good attitude about his MS. He is amazing. I, on the other hand, go through the Kubler-Ross stages of grief whenever he has a setback. Since we spent most of our marriage without MS, it is still new (2 years) and I miss our previous life. But, we have to trudge along as spouse/caregivers and adapt the best we can - and maybe learn a thing or two from our incredible husbands.

  2. My mantra I learned from my mother is "the alternative stinks", she lived to be 92. It mostly sux to have MS, but surrounding myself with non-toxic people is very very important. So, smile for your husband and remember "the alternative stinks"!

  3. PS I'm the spouse w/MS, not my husband, and we've been married 34 years in 2 days!

  4. Kelly~
    Everyday is an adventure! That's my way to deal. I don't know why I have this dreaded condition and I hope with all my heart for a cure~ and honestly every day is difficult, like everyone else with MS, different than I thought!

    I have learned to live in the now. There are honestly great times even with the MS. I say that because I don't live in pain. I have had neuro pain in the past and I honestly don't have any idea how people live in pain. I don't know if I could find any joy in the 'now'.

  5. Yes, the pain thing ruins things for me. THe last few weeks I've been pain free and it's bloody marvellous. All of a sudden I can see the world without the grey pall of agony over it.
    So am rejoicing in the "now" knowing that at any time it can be taken away from me again.