Home > MS Experience > A Reflection 1 Year in: MS and COVID-19

A Reflection 1 Year in: MS and COVID-19

By Garvis Leak
March 31, 2021

Hello to you all. I pray all is well. We made it to 2021. 

The year 2020 is written in the books, A year that will live in infamy.

Over the last year, I have struggled with fear and anxiety about the thought of how COVID-19 would affect me. Sometimes, I would lose sleep trying to figure out the unknown.  I would pray and pray again for guidance and wisdom on this matter. 

As we know, we (MSers) have chronic problems that make catching this virus sometimes more frightening. Man, COVID-19 is no joke and doesn’t discriminate (race, creed, age, ethnicity, medical conditions, etc.). 

During 2020, we were sometimes confined and isolated from friends and love ones; however, we survived. There is something that continues to remind me, I am here for a purpose. Although, we were restricted and secluded, my wife and I decided to continue to my workouts. We would walk a least three times a week, and I built a small gym in the basement and garage. 

Since, we have cold weather in Dayton, Ohio, we decided to walk the mall at least three times a week. We would get there approximately 10 a.m. and walk the mall with other mall walkers, mostly senior citizens. It has been a hoot!

On a typical day, we would enter the mall, have a kiss, pray and off we go.  Our goal is to complete at least 3 miles. I never thought, I would become a mall walker, but it has been a heartfelt experience.  We had the opportunity to meet several new people and it is a blessing to wave to friendly faces with a smile. Yes, the mask in on J. 

Now, my wife is a fast walker, and I cannot keep up with her pace due to my primary progressive MS (note: I used to be a marathon runner and my wife could not keep up with me).

Man, how times have changed. 

As we know, COVID-19 has changed the way we live, but the new normal is not so bad. During 2020, we have learned to love more, spend quality time with the family via video calls and cook more at home. We have spent hours on the phone instead of sending texts and emails. Most importantly, we learned more about ourselves and our purpose in life. 

Have you ever wondered? What is my purpose in life, living with MS? How can I make a difference; although my mobility has been hindered? Who should I blame for my MS diagnosis? 

You see, I have asked these questions and more. I decided to face my MS head on and make a difference. Talking with my neurologist about how to improve my overall well-being, eating better, while receiving love and support from family and friends.

Here is the icing on the cake. I am writing a blog for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society to tell my story, in order to help others dealing with this disease.    

My goal is to let you know, you are here for a PURPOSE! Nevertheless, you have to decide on the correct path of this journey you are willing to take. We could blame a lot of other entities because of our situation.

Most importantly, we can embrace our MS, learn to love ourselves and press forward. I highly recommend you embrace life, love yourself and others and press forward.  

Finally, make a difference and bloom where you are planted.

Until next time!

Garvis Leak

Garvis is a lifecoach/financial wellness coach from Dayton, OH. He served 26 years in the Air Force, retiring as a Senior Master Sergeant. Garvis was diagnosis with MS in 2015 after going to a neurosurgeon because of back/leg pain. You can keep with Garvis through his website and Instagram account.

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