I would be hard pressed to find another person more excited than myself to use a blog platform for a health awareness campaign. Today, that person just might be my blogging friend, Beth, who writes at Ups and Downs of a Yoga Mom.
Beth is awesome. A calm island in a sea of blogging chaos. She is positive, supportive, good natured, generous, and gentle — things I love in friends and bloggers alike.
I was worried for her two years ago when she bravely announced her new diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis (MS) to her readers. The symptoms were scary — terrifying, really, for someone with a history and awareness of brain tumors like myself. Beth approached her MS in her writing with the same calm manner she approached most of her topics. I choose hope for her.
Two years later, frustrated with the lack of current information and resources she and other folks diagnosed with MS needed, Beth did what Beth does — she opted to create it herself.
The website is fantastic. If you or someone you know has an MS diagnosis, head over there directly. There are links to news stories and resources about the disease, first person accounts of having MS (Beth is very open to guest bloggers, so connect with her if you want to tell your story, too), a Q and A section, and a page dedicated to families and caregivers of someone with MS. It is a crisp site, easy to use and navigate, and feels like a community as well as a resource.
The tagline for this new venture is “You are not alone,” something that Beth felt herself soon after diagnosis and the days leading up to it. While I’ve never been through a health crisis myself, I’ve cared for family members who have. The isolation of living with chronic illness is one of the most difficult things to cope with, after the shock of diagnosis wears off. Not everyone understands how or why a change in health status impacts day-to-day life.
Beth knows this. And having missed the resources she herself looked for, she went and created it for others in her community. See, that is what I love about Beth. So many strong women I know, despite whatever crosses they bear, understand the importance of community and the comfort it brings.
If you have MS, if you know of someone with MS, please look into the Modern Day MS community. It will help.