I must share. No, I am in no way on a payroll to plug books, but I would be remiss not to share with you some really good stuff.
One of my biggest concerns since diagnosed in 2001 is how to handle the issue of MS (or any disabling disease) when children are involved. My son has grown into adolescence with my MS, and he is aware of Mom's limitations. His favorite childhood movie was the VHS instruction film that accompanied the Beta Seron I injected during the early days of my diagnosis. (I do not deny that we are a stange family.) So far my multiple sclerosis has not negatively affected him. That is not the case with many individuals.
It is an unfortunate truth that a large population of MS Warriors eventually loose the battle with MS. No, multiple sclerosis cannot kill us, but ramifications of the disease always lurk in the back ground, waiting to use MS as the scapegoat.
I am always on the look out for sensitive reading material on the subject of MS. Not only for me, but to share with young people.
Esther Ehrlich has written a sad, sad, but realistic version of one young girl's introduction to multiple sclerosis.
As a debut publication, Nest is an extremely powerful young adult novel. Wile reading Nest I giggled, I cringed, I laughed out loud, I remembered, and I cried.
Maybe I am just too close to the theme of the novel, but I might actually have second thoughts on presenting this to a child whose parent is diagnosed with MS. At least that was my initial thought.
Then I considered the time in which the story is set. This is important to know because multiple sclerosis was even more of a mystery prior to the flower power and disco days. While main character Chirp and her sister Rachel entertain themselves flashing peace signs at one another, MS is being treated with electric shock therapy. Now that is frightening, but it is also dated information.
Reading Nest made me shiver at the thought of trading in Century 21 treatments for the medieval "doctoring" of the twentieth century. This just proves that medical science really is working toward answering the many questions that surround multiple sclerosis.
I really enjoyed Nest an even contacted the author to let her know that. At one time I would not have been brave enough to do some thing so bold as to write to an established author. This is something that i have noticed about myself since D-Day 2001. I have become ridiculously brave. Hey, I have already put the MonSter in its place. A little e-mail is NOTHING.
Next Monday I am scheduled to present to a class of second graders on the subject of being different. My fellow presenter is from the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Although this is a totally different condition than the one we Warriors suffer, this offers the perfect opportunity to compare obvious disabilities to the often elements of multiple sclerosis. Children (everyone, in fact) need to know that pain is not always obvious. I will only have a few minutes to get my point across, therefore any lesson plan I have considered is probably out of the question. If you have any ideas, I would LOVE to hear from you.
In the mean-time, check out Esther Ehrlich's novel, Nest. I guarantee Chirp will stay with you for a long time.
Home is a cozy nest on Cape Cod for eleven-year-old Naomi "Chirp" Orenstein; her older sister , Rachel; her psychiatrist father; and her dancer mother. But when Chirp's mom develops symptoms of a serious disease, the family struggles with tragic changes. http://estherehrlich.com/
It's rain here in Monongah, but the sun is shining in my house.
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