My two takeaways from this book : 1/"...laughter is a legitimate way to release negative energy." (I knew that, but deSousa reinforced my belief.); and 2/"MS can mean the end of some things for you (as can any chronic illness)...If you dig deep down and find what truly inspires you, you can do anything you really want to...(though) you may have to adjust your dreams..." Nailed it.
Now as I do not have MS, but my sista from the same mutha does, I decided to enlist her help in reviewing this book. Here's what she had to say:
"I recently had the good fortune to have a copy of Yvonne deSousa's MS Madness!: A "Giggle More, Cry Less" Story of Multiple Sclerosis put into my hands by a loving sister who knows chronic illness herself and has witnessed the results of my long struggle with multiple sclerosis. I'll admit to being somewhat reluctant to read yet another "my experiences with this or that disease" type of book but was quickly drawn into MS Madness by Ms. de Sousa's breezy writing style and humor. Even though we are almost a generation apart in my estimation (and I don't deeply appreciate the same music she does), I certainly found a great deal to identify with in this writer's chronicle of going from being a multi-tasking, arrive early/stay late dynamo in a busy front office setting of a medical practice, to a person profoundly changed by an incurable disease of unknown specific cause. Ms. deSousa's details about the sometimes baffling symptoms and the difficulty in finally getting to a diagnosis after a long struggle had me nodding my head up and down, saying to myself, "Yep, I know what you mean...".
Ms. deSousa relates her struggles with "brain fog", a condition that plagues many who have multiple sclerosis. Cognition changes are scary and I sense that this issue and her overwhelming fatigue were very hard on a woman who prided herself as a can-do/go-to person that she was to her work associates, family and friends. I identified strongly with her descriptions of the changes in her body as the MS took hold. Her frustration at figuring out what was going on rang very true, as did the sadness in recognizing the losses this disease causes in one's life. Ms. deSousa is fortunate to have been diagnosed sooner into her struggle with multiple sclerosis than I was and to have found, with some effort, a doctor that she can depend on. But what shines through in her telling of her story of coming to terms with this chronic illness is that humor and personal insight rule the day and win in the end." ~Leslie A. Guyer
Thanks for the eloquent review, Les! That's definitely two thumbs-up here! If you have MS or any chronic illness, this is a great book to help lift your spirits and change your perspective if you've been down in the dumps. DeSousa reminds us that no matter what, there is always something to smile about, though sometimes we have to look pretty durn hard to find it!
MS Madness! A "Giggle More, Cry Less" Story of Multiple Sclerosis is available from Amazon in Kindle and paperback format at http://www.amazon.com/MS-Madness-Yvonne-Desousa/dp/0989972364, or in paperback from Erase MS, where 50% of the profits go to the Race to Erase MS http://shop.erasems.org/products/ms-madness-a-giggle-more-cry-less-story-of-multiple-sclerosis.