Attention, Love And Time

I need to foster relationships.

“You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and possibly a soul mate who will remain loyal to the end.” ~ Bob Marley

You do so much for me that I believe you can accomplish anything. You can handle anything. Plus you provide support without any questions or expectations. And it’s not fair.

When it’s time for me to give in return, I almost always fall short. And that makes me feel like a failure. It’s not because of a lack of effort. I really try my best. It’s because I am not the same person I used to be. I’m different.

It’s amazing, despite my flaws, that someone in this world can still love me. I limp. I fall. I stutter. Sometimes I sleep all day. My thoughts are frantic. Most of my ideas are only half thought out. And I seem to drift through the day.

Once, I did everything on my own. Now I need assistance. I’ve become such a liability. I feel like a burden to everyone. My deficits put so much pressure directly on our relationship. Forcing you to constantly adjust between being a companion and a caretaker.

That awkward reality makes me withdraw. Where I become absorbed in my circumstance. Compelling me to complete task unaided, when I should be asking for help. Placing all my focus on myself. Putting everything else on hold. And unfortunately that sometimes includes you. Those times when my heart is so far away. Even when we’re sitting right next to each other, I’m still thousands of miles away.

It’s because I’m just so distracted. My mind is preoccupied with staying sane. The pain in my head sounds like a conversation with my grief. And it will not shut up. Creating a diversion so strong I barely listen when you talk. When you ask questions, sometimes I don’t even answer back.

But I can’t use my difficulties as an excuse to neglect you. The answer is plain and simple. I need to find a different way to foster our relationship. Just because some of my abilities are lacking, doesn’t mean I don’t have anything to offer. I can’t physically assist in strengthening and growing our bond. But I can give you what I do have. More attention, love, and time.

Author: Nicole Lemelle

My name is Nicole Lemelle. I am a writer, activist and a person living with Multiple Sclerosis. I created My New Normals to educate those who do not understand MS, reassure people with similar plights and inspire everyone to seize command of their lives.

13 thoughts on “Attention, Love And Time”

  1. I agree with Judy, I was thinking the same thing, that this is a love letter. It has been said to me countless times (and I still don’t quite buy it) that people often get more from helping than they do being helped, if that makes sense. When I ask a stranger on the street to hold a door for me, rather than my request being an imposition, it gives that stranger an opportunity to help.

  2. To Linda-I, too, have had MS for 31+ years and I have a husband who is with me after 39 years this March 31 and is a nurturing and caring person. What a blessing in Christ we have. Every day I cannot fathom the price that he has had to pay to sustain our marriage ! Thank you for your comments which hit the nail smack dab on the Head!

    1. My heart goes out to you. After having MS so many years (35), I certainly recognize what you have described. I too, used to be independent and self sufficient. Losing abilities does numbers on one’s self confidence, not to mention optimism and future plans. I can only give some insight and that is to focus on what you can do, not on what you can’t do. Take note of your limitations to be safe, but it is amazing how much you can do in spite of the lost abilities. If you are in RRMS, at least the exacerbations pass. If progression is a reality, its harder. I don’t accept simple directives from doctors that I just have to deal with the realities of my disease. For instance, when in pain, I don’t accept that it is just MS and to take a pill (usually addicting) to treat it…I find out what is causing the pain. In my case it was aggravation in my lower back, a result of scoliosis in my lumbar region. I guess what I am saying is to be proactive for you…listen to your body. I wish you the best.

  3. This is beautiful Nicole and such a good reminder to really appreciate and care for our loved ones in anyway we can.

  4. WOW! You have so beautifully and honestly described our disease and its weight on a marriage relationship…that is, a strong marriage relationship. I also have a very caring husband and have witnessed how you have maintained with the same kind of partner as I have. Aren’t we lucky! That sounds so one dimensional. What you have described is anything but one dimensional, and I have shared many of the same feelings and experiences as you have. What a journey we are making.

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