This post for Endearing Pain is off the general path for Dining With Donald. However, I knew Colleen years ago when I attended Church of the Way, and I think her story is worth a read. Check out her book launch on May 2, more info at the bottom of post.
“Pain is Universal.” That is the first quote on the back cover of Endearing Pain: Life Lessons from MS Afflictions,” Written by Winnipeg author and former teacher, Colleen Peters. Just over a decade ago Peters discovered she was living with Progressive Relapsing Multiple Sclerosis (PRMS). PRMS is a particularly nasty and unrelenting strain of MS.
Over the last 10-12 years, the basic activities of life, from walking to cooking and many in between have become battles with pain. Slowly but relentlessly, Peters is losing the ability to complete these tasks. Independence continues to give way to dependence, and physical activity to inactivity. All this with excruciating pain which only increases over time. Plus, living with a disease that most people don’t understand, and trying to find a way to explain her life to the people she meets.
Endearing Pain: Life Lessons From MS Afflictions
The book is written as a series of letters. The letters started as an attempt to answer the question, “how are you doing.” As Peters explains in the opening chapter, that question is often difficult to answer. The letters that form this book are her attempts to provide answers.
These letters are sporadic in their frequency. This helps the reader to remember the capricious nature of PRMS. It also illustrates that PRMS is not a disease that Peters has control over. At the same time, the content of the letters serves to let the reader know that Peters has not let the disease have control over her.
Reading the book I find myself wondering how any one person can bear such pain. The answer it seems lies in Peters faith. This is not a faith that denies pain. Nor does it see pain as punishment. “Pain is universal,” as has already been stated.