Friday, January 23, 2009

No Kidding

My husband and I do not have children. People think this is because of my disability but we actually didn't really want to have children. My diagnosis finalized this decision. People feel sorry for you when they think that you cannot have children but it's a different story when they learn you didn't want them. After all, normal people want children and there's obviously something wrong with people who feel otherwise.

I know that in my situation, children would've been a very bad idea. My disease is incompatible with the mommy lifestyle. Granted, I do stay at home but I have to pay somebody to take care of me. I am not physically able to care for a child and I lack the stamina to be with children for any length of time. MS fatigue is real and I usually take a nap after breakfast until at least 10:00 AM. Finally, my body is a serious superfund site of chemicals needed to keep my disease in check. I shudder to think that I might be worse off without them. Basically, I'm saying that I am perfectly content being the aunt of five nieces and nephews with another one on the way. I send them presents, receive pictures and even visit them occasionally. I'm the auntie in the wheelchair who doesn't really do much.

So, you may be wondering if people with MS can have children? The answer isn't a simple one and really needs to be decided on a case-by-case basis. Women are more likely to have the disease, so there is data on MS and pregnancy. The remarkable thing is that most women do very well during their pregnancy, but experience a relapse five or six months after delivery. This is why female hormones are being studied so closely as potential MS therapy. For that reason, I am glad that some people with my disease are having children. We need everything we can find to fight this disease.

At lunch today, my aide and I were seated near a table of mommies and their brood of little ones from an infant to four-year olds. They were cute, but what a commotion. I was glad to see them leave. Besides, at least one of them was staring at me the entire time. I just add to keep reminding myself that these children are our future and will eventually be part of the workforce needed to keep my Social Security checks coming. God bless the children!

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