Patrick’s Blog

I’m Patrick and I run this website. This is a rambling series of articles based around my life disabled with multiple sclerosis (M)S & how I cope. It became so big that I have had to break it down into small groups which you will see on the right hand side.

I am an optimist and like to see the happier side of life. I hope this comes through in these articles on my life with MSNo one likes a person who does not smile

My long journey with multiple sclerosis

My long journey with multiple sclerosis

This is the story of 45 years of my life living with multiple sclerosis as we both grew up. I did not piece the whole story together until I took medical retirement in 2012. My long journey with multiple sclerosis. My long journey with multiple sclerosis It all started in 1972 and I was almost […]

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My first job interview since 2012

My first job interview since 2012

Recently I received an email from a charity that wanted to interview me for a zero hour contract position. I have advanced multiple sclerosis and I cannot walk unaided which I disclosed on the application form. This was going to be my first job interview since 2012. My MS blew the last one in 2012 […]

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9 comments

Making an annual wish to improve my life

Making an annual wish to improve my life

Back in the day I would make a resolution every New Year’s eve. Its such an easy thing to say when I’ve drunk a glass a glass or two too many. Everyone else has made one so why shouldn’t I? Now I’m a bit softer in the stomach and wiser in the head so I’ve […]

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Simple things I now need to understand

Simple things I now need to understand

A few years ago I kidded myself that I could still do the things just like I did in the noughties. Simple things I now need to understand. “Don’t worry, I can do it” I shouted enthusiastically as I was starting jobs like cooking supper. It would all begin swimmingly. Suddenly, out of the blue, […]

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Detected definite changes since last year

Detected definite changes since last year

It is extraordinary how one year rolls into the next at an ever increasing speed. At a quick glance I am exactly the same as 12 months ago. I’ve still got MS, who saw that one coming! I still ride The Trike and I’m still just as busy. Now scratch beneath the surface. I have […]

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2 comments

Call it advanced multiple sclerosis

Call it advanced multiple sclerosis

Soon I’m going to be 64 so not quite as nimble as I was. Age doesn’t stop me having a social life. I go to the theatre and museums in London. Meet friends in one of the numerous coffee shops in our town. I go to the supermarket, buy the food and then cook dinner. […]

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Doing Pilates sitting down

Doing Pilates sitting down

Pilates is a stretching and exercise program focusing on core muscles. These are the ones in your stomach. Keeping these muscles healthy does help my balance and walking. To put it bluntly this means I don’t need to use a wheelchair just yet. It’s only too easy to say “Oh I need to take some […]

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I am physically disabled but I still travel

I am physically disabled but I still travel

When I was working I travelled all over the world then medical retirement kicked me in the groin. Life as I knew it suddenly changed. Occasionally I still get the urge to travel, this time me and The Wife went to Australia. I am physically disabled but I still travel. Cut the stress I have just […]

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7 comments

Three vignettes from the last few days

Three vignettes from the last few days

A change to the usual post; three vignettes from the last few days. August was supposed to be a quiet month but there has been something happening nearly every day. Summer is now over and the days are getting noticeably shorter. The ‘to do’ list was supposed to shrink, instead it has grown. Looking ahead Next […]

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Over 30 degrees Celsius this summer

Over 30 degrees Celsius this summer

The summer of 1976, was so hot that I got a good suntan in Aberdeen. A student job, I was working outdoors every day. In Hertfordshire the temperature has frequently been over 30 degrees Celsius this summer. At times  it’s been far too hot, stuffy and airless for my own comfort. Let me explain Don’t get […]

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I have discovered sitting-down gardening

I have discovered sitting-down gardening

I have had to discover a different way to garden. It is because I am disabled by MS and things had to change. It is now ‘plastic-lined’ boxes type of gardening. No more digging holes with a spade or bending over to pull up weeds. I have discovered sitting-down gardening.  Perhaps it discovered me, who […]

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4 comments

One Hell of a Day

One Hell of a Day

There have been some cracking days this summer. Yup, it has been a bit hot but I have really enjoyed getting dressed in just a T-shirt and a pair of shorts. Like all good things there will be an end. I had a bit of a hiccup on Monday 9th July. It really was one […]

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A progressive disease is one that gets worse

A progressive disease is one that gets worse

A progressive disease is one that gets worse. Perfectly true but for an awful lot of them it’s in an unpredictable way. Will it progress quickly or slowly? Is it predictable? What are the consequences? Inevitably this leads to a lot of anxiety, sometimes even depression and worry. Doesn’t this sound like multiple sclerosis? I […]

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Aid4Disabled is nominated as an MS blog

Aid4Disabled is nominated as an MS blog

I’m wary of emails from people or organisations that I have never heard of. I receive an enormous amount of spam email. Its when they begin “Hi Aid4Disabled”, I look no further and press the delete key. Imagine my surprise when an email told me “Aid4Disabled is nominated as an MS blog”. How did it […]

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5 comments

Walking round the supermarket with a trolley

Walking round the supermarket with a trolley

When I started taking Fampridine the physiotherapist was insistent that I take more exercise. I mentioned that I go to the supermarket every day and do the shopping on The Trike (3 wheel light-weight mobility scooter). Her eyes lit up, “I know what you can do” she said. “This is an idea. Walking round the supermarket […]

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10 comments

MS for over 70 percent of my life

MS for over 70 percent of my life

I am 63, born in 1954. I have lived with Multiple Sclerosis for 45 years, that’s a scary thought. It started in 1972 but I was not diagnosed until 1995. It morphed to secondary progressive or advanced MS in about 2000. I took medical retirement in 2012. I have had MS for over 70 percent of […]

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8 comments

Does my disability make me worth less?

Does my disability make me worth less?

So Christmas is done and dusted for another year. Decorations have been taken down and put in the loft. The Boy Scouts have collected the tree and recycled it. We’ve even managed to empty the fridge. Now wouldn’t it be lovely if I could just pack up my MS and store that in the loft […]

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13 comments

Just another little fall

Just another little fall

In the kitchen I must use a stool on wheels. The Wife and I were cooking supper last Sunday and everything was getting a bit fraught. Not enough pairs of hands to prepare everything. I moved forward on my stool but a wheel got stuck in the grouting between two floor tiles. The stool stopped […]

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Nobody mentioned grab rails

Nobody mentioned grab rails

I guess a few of you who are reading this have got that irritating little disease, multiple sclerosis. It’s the way it advances. Step by step it creeps up on you. It’s funny how something that wasn’t a problem changes and becomes a problem. Even worse, suddenly its an ‘in your face’ problem. We had […]

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6 comments

Every morning I have to stretch my stiff muscles

Every morning I have to stretch my stiff muscles

Getting straight out of bed and immediately walking into the bathroom, don’t make me laugh :-). Every morning I have to stretch my stiff muscles. What did I do in my sleep? Was I racing Mo Farah last night or was it just a nightmare? Whatever it was, it has left my muscles scrunched up. An […]

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6 comments

Can I walk at least six kilometres

Can I walk at least six kilometres

On 24th September 2017 the MS Society is organising a sponsored walk called ‘Together we walk’. On their website they state ‘This September hundreds of MS Superstars, our friends and families, will join forces in London to take in the sights and raise funds to stop MS. Will you join us?’ Can I walk at […]

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8 comments

Think about the positives

Think about the positives

Too many people with progressive MS suffer in the heat, I know I do. I’m not naturally lazy its just that I am clobbered by the heat. The energy just drains out of my body and worse if its humid as well. Two hot days and already I’m apprehensive of the summer. I must remember […]

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Stumble fall crunch and wallop

Stumble fall crunch and wallop

Monday evening We had finished watching episode 5 of Line of Duty. No spoilers I promise. Program finished and we were done. All that was left was to clear up the room and toddle off to bed. The Wife had taken the glasses through to the kitchen. All I had to do was switch off […]

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6 comments

Another milestone in the inevitable progression of my MS

Another milestone in the inevitable progression of my MS

Something has definitely changed in the last few weeks. It was not an ‘Oh my God’ moment as in a flash of inspiration. Instead it was an ‘Oh my God’ realisation and it took a few weeks for me to understand. Let’s call it another milestone in the inevitable progression of my MS. Life moves […]

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2 comments

Sometimes I want a bit of stress

Sometimes I want a bit of stress

We can all recall moments when stress has got the better of us. Moments of bad stress might include road rage, trolley rage, package rage and even computer rage. All caused by heightened anger or frustration. Sometimes I want a bit of stress. Sometimes I want a bit of stress Stress like this lasts for […]

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What would I like returned to me by Multiple Sclerosis?

What would I like returned to me by Multiple Sclerosis?

What would I like returned to me by Multiple Sclerosis? I’m talking about basic abilities, ones I have lost for ever. The list is far too long to bore you. In my dreams there is only I would like back. I’m sure it’s something lots of people take for granted. Right now I am really […]

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8 comments

Every morning its four sticky FES electrodes

Every morning its four sticky FES electrodes

Every morning its four sticky FES electrodes. I must put them on my left leg. Two go onto my thigh and two go just below the knee. I started using the FES two years ago in December 2014. I estimate that I have taken the sticky electrodes off about 720 times and put them back […]

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6 comments

Going away for a short break

Going away for a short break

Going away for a short break used to be so easy. The hardest part was deciding where to go. The wife and I would finally agree on a place. From then on it was a simple process. Throw a few clothes into a suitcase, grab a book, car keys, wallet and the cheque book and […]

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WorldvsMS challenge and The Amsterdam HACK

WorldvsMS challenge and The Amsterdam HACK

The WordvsMS campaign is an initiative that had been setup to give a voice to people with Multiple Sclerosis. The campaign has asked people with MS to list their challenges in everyday life. Three challenges were accepted from 103 that were submitted A weekend in mid-November was selected when groups of people were invited to […]

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6 comments

Going back to Pilates

Going back to Pilates

I have missed my last four Pilates’ sessions. They are on a Friday morning but I have been away. Going back to Pilates was a bit like going back to school after the Easter or Christmas break. Going back to Pilates Don’t get me wrong I enjoy Pilates. It helps me with the biggest problems […]

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2 comments

Its when the unexpected happens

Its when the unexpected happens

Its when the unexpected accident happens. Inevitably I get stressed and this feeling lasts for a couple of hours. When I am feeling fragile it does not take much to tip me over the edge. Most of the time I’m as tough as old boots. Its when the unexpected happens The problem is the MS. My memory and sense […]

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4 comments

MS Society MSLIFE2016 Exhibition

MS Society MSLIFE2016 Exhibition

Over the weekend 17/18 September the MS Society held its biennial exhibition, The MS Society MSLIFE2016 Exhibition MS Society MSLIFE2016 Exhibition I went there on the first day and arrived at about 12.30. There was expectation and excitement from the moment I walked into the exhibition as well as a noisy atmosphere. During the day I […]

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Do my morning exercises

Do my morning exercises

As little as ten years ago I would wake up and get out of bed without a thought. Such bliss, such joy. Now when I wake up I always feel horribly stiff. It’s a huge effort to turn over onto my back so I can swing my legs out of bed and sit on the […]

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Sticky electrodes and my FES

Sticky electrodes and my FES

I started using a Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES) in January 2014. It has been my game changer. Without the sticky electrodes and my FES I would probably have to use a wheelchair around the house. Hold on a moment, I would definitely have to use a wheelchair. Instead I have a different life. Sticky electrodes and my […]

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2 comments

An invisible physical disability

An invisible physical disability

Are you like me? I suffer from an invisible physical disability. Do these statements sound familiar? “Crikey I didn’t know you were disabled”.  Or maybe someone said “You don’t look disabled”. Sometimes it’s even “You look healthy”, and then they deserve a slap. An invisible physical disability Millions of us in Briton have a hidden disability. […]

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8 comments

Some things I simply do not see 

Some things I simply do not see 

Vision is a bit of a mystery to me at times. Some things I can see perfectly well and some things I simply do not see. I know my vision is not 20/20 🙁 I always have to wear a pair of  glasses, I even have special reading glasses. Some things I simply do not […]

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