“In the depth of winter,
I finally learned that within me
lay an invincible summer.”
I am Willeke-Maya, a tenacious and neurologically compromised female expat living in Ireland since 2002.
MS knocked on my door in 2005. It was awkward, puzzling, easier said than done, and the type of illness that carries this tagline, “The illness is mine, but the tragedy theirs,” when asked how your family feels about your condition. Buzzwords that don’t exactly calm down an overactive mind.
Any illness is unwelcome, that much we can agree on. MS’s unpredictability means it can strike at any time, any place and in so many different ways your body and the outside world’s reaction to it often feels as if you’re going through a war zone. When I entered the MS academy, I read the small print and knew it wouldn’t be a 365-day holiday. But, if one good thing has come from being diagnosed 14 years ago, it’s the perception that no matter what happens, life goes on.
And boy, does it go on. Since then, life became more imaginative, engaging and determined.
This blog, or IMSM in short, grew from the desire to convey optimism through writing in 2011. By sharing thoughts, hopes and fears, it turned into a mix of personal stories and info about MS.
Now 16,5 years in Ireland, I remain fiercely independent as always and hope to help change people’s perception of invisible illnesses like MS.
To this day, MS has been a mere part of my life in Ireland, a life worth living to the fullest.
More on awards and nominations
This website does not:
◼ Publish health claims that seem too good to be true
◼ Use deliberately obscure, “scientific” sounding language
◼ Promise quick, dramatic, miraculous results
Updated: May 29th, 2019
◾ MyTherapyApp: Multiple Sclerosis Blogs: 10 of the Best in 2019
◾ Ireland Blog Awards: Finalist 2014, 2015, 2017
◾ MyTherapyApp: Best MS Blog for Simplicity 2018
◾ Everyday Health: Top 10 MS Blog of 2018
◾ Feedspot: Top 50 MS Blog 2017, 2018, 2019
© Willeke Van Eeckhoutte and Ireland, Multiple Sclerosis & Me, 2011-2019.