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6 Things I Wish More People Understood About Multiple Sclerosis

6 Things I Wish More People Understood About Multiple Sclerosis

Today (March 9, 2024) is a special day — it’s my MSiversary, or MS anniversary. On this day six years ago, I was diagnosed with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (MS). Once I got over the initial shock and sadness of being told I’m living with a chronic illness for which there is no yet a cure, and grieved my former life and self, I began a journey of gratitude.

You may find it strange that I celebrate my diagnosis day, but honestly, it was the catalyst for major change — positive change — in me. MS has caused me to live life more urgently and to appreciate every day, every victory I win, big or small. Because my illness is largely invisible, it may seem like all is well with me physically, mentally and emotionally. Many days it is; however, there are many invisible battles that I fight every day.

With March being MS Awareness Month, I thought it was prime time for me to share with you six things I wish more people understood about multiple sclerosis:


  1. Living with MS doesn’t mean I’m not capable. Yes, I may need to adapt and do things differently, but my ambitions, dreams, and abilities are still very much alive. As a matter of fact, you’re witnessing a major dream being realized in me being my own boss and creating enamel pins and other wearables that resonate with chronically chill people like me.
  2. If there’s something you want to know about my condition, just ask. I truly am an open book. I quite literally wrote about my diagnosis journey in my self-help memoir, “Jesus Year.” Consider this your open invitation to dialogue, to dive deep into the real talk about MS and its impact on me. Please don’t assume. I’m here for all your questions, your curiosities, even your fears. Your willingness to learn and connect is a powerful step towards true understanding, and makes me feel seen.
  3. The intersectionality of being a Black woman with MS is something I grapple with often. It’s like walking a tightrope where my race, gender, and health condition intersect, coloring every aspect of my journey — from dealing with the healthcare system to just trying to connect with folks socially. These intersections shape my entire experience, influencing how I access care, get diagnosed, and find my community. It’s a multifaceted journey that calls for a deeper awareness, because honestly, it’s about navigating the entirety of who I am in this world, not just my health.
  4. Mental health is a crucial part of living with MS. Depression is a common symptom of MS and is something that I personally have persevered through. The emotional toll of MS is real, and support for our mental well-being is just as important as physical treatment. Seeing my therapist biweekly has been a game-changer for my well-being.
  5. We need more understanding and patience from more people. MS can be unpredictable, and some days are harder than others. A little empathy can go a long way in making those tough days a bit easier. As the saying goes, you have no idea what a person may be going through.
  6. MS doesn’t define me. I am many things: a wife, a daughter, a sister, an auntie, a dog mom, a business owner, a bestselling author, a loyal friend, a word nerd, a pin collector and designer. I’m also a millennial Black woman with dreams, passions, and experiences that go beyond my diagnosis. I want to be seen for who I am, not just my condition.


In closing, I want to extend my gratitude to each of you for taking the time to read and to learn what I experience on the daily. Wishing you all a meaningful and enlightening MS Awareness Month. Thank you for being a part of this journey with me!

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