Monday, March 3, 2014

The Best Medicine Is Vodka

But the second best medicine is laughter. Or so they say. Lawyers get to tell lawyer jokes. Doctors get to tell doctor jokes. Everyone gets to tell Putin jokes. Short Jewish girls like me get to tell Jewish mother jokes:

The first Jewish president is being sworn in. His mother, sitting on the dais, nudges the man next to her. “See that man taking the Oath of Office?” she asks. “His brother’s a doctor.”

And MS patients get to make jokes about MS. Actually, I think patients with any disease have carte blanche to tell ANY joke that makes them laugh. We should always try to find the funny. So, as we embark on an entire month of MS Awareness, I gotta find some funny before I go a little nuts. (Honestly, do we need a whole month? How is it possible that this ridiculous disease gets more calendar time than Black History month?)
Disclaimer: I have a sick and twisted sense of humor. If you don’t like my type of humor, just give it a few years. My immune system will eventually eat through that too.

MS gets on my nerves. (Ba dum bum.) I’ve had to redefine things in my life. These days, taking a shot no longer involves salt and limes. Well, at least not on Wednesday nights. I have little round bruises all over my legs. I look like I’ve been in a fight with a very strong 4-year-old. But know that my immune system is so badass, only thing tough enough to kick my ass is me.

Lately, I want to stay in bed all day. I don’t know if that is MS fatigue or being depressed because I have MS. I am so tired I can’t even find the strength to roll over and eat that 5-day-old sugar cookie I left on my bedside table (in case of emergency). But I try to keep a positive attitude. Which doesn’t really help me. But it annoys the hell out of some people. And that is always fun to do.

In that spirit, this will be my Christmas card this year.

That's right, boys. I'm newly single. Let me know if you want a crack at that pair of optic nerves. And yes, they are real and they are spectacular. 

I think we can all agree that MS sucks. For the love of all that is holy, do not try to validate this opinion by going to However, if you want to take your mind off your central nervous system and focus on other body parts, this site may be helpful to you.

There are some real benefits to having MS. Now, falling off my bar stool after three long island ice teas can be blamed on a very brief relapse. I can curse with impunity, simply claiming that all vulgarity is due to the shredding of my brain-to-mouth filter. 

Thanks to MS, I no longer have to feign grace in 4-inch stilettos. Those days are over. And, like a faithful collie, my Converse have been patiently waiting for me to return to them. They already knew what I had yet to learn. Poly-shoe-amory is a myth and can never work in the long term. My dalliance into the world of the patent-leather pump was exciting, but unstable and unfulfilling. I am going to miss being able to tell a douchebag guy that I wear heels bigger than his dick. Actually, I'll probably still say it. 

Please, if you find me dead in a crumpled ball on the landing of my stairs, include in my obituary that I fought a gallant fight and died bravely, with dignity. Please don’t mention that I tripped over my cat and choked to death on the spoonful of Ben & Jerry’s Cookie Dough ice cream.

Don’t ask me to contribute to MS research. I gave at the pharmacy. I do not want to run, walk, bike, or swim to raise money for research. I will, however, be happy to walk or swim for concert tickets or steak. And the only marathon in my future is House of Cards on Netflix.
You have to find the funny. It is the only way to survive the shit storm. The funny is there. Every single time. It might take time--lots of time--to find it. But it's there.

Thank you ladies and gentlemen. I’ll be here all week. Remember to tip your waitresses.


  1. this is my favourite MS joke (cribbed from Douglas Coupland's "Eleanor Rigby"):

    I say, I say, I say. How many people with MS does it take to put in a lightbulb?

    I don't know. How many people with MS does it take to put in a lightbulb?

    Five million - one person to do it, and four million nine hundred and ninety-nine thousand nine hundred and ninety-nine to write depressing online blogs.

    BADUM-TISH - from one of the 4,999,999


    Inspiring story about living and winning with MS

    1. It makes all the difference in the world when the person who promises to be there to catch her as she falls across the finish line is actually there to catch her.