23. I’m a celebrity …. and I have MS.

Upon hearing the news I sent Jack the following tweet:

‘Hi, I have MS, was only diagnosed at Christmas. I write a blog if you fancy a giggle, it’s GlamorousGirlsGetMS.com

Good luck x’

‘PS. Pearl is the best name ever! Fact! This is my Pearl’

(For those of you who don’t know, Jack’s new daughter is called Pearl … as is my cat.)

Perhaps needless to say but I didn’t get a reply. I guess he’s probably had quite a lot of support already.

I have to say I was slightly aggrieved that my diagnosis in December hadn’t attracted quite the same level of press attention. But then again ‘barrister and lover of cats and gin’ doesn’t have the same ring as ‘adrenaline junkie and son of Ozzy and Sharon’.

Nevertheless Jack’s ‘coming out’ can be nothing but a good thing.

MS is a condition that does’t generate as much interest as some others. It’s rarely in the press and MS charities aren’t as dominant as the cancer charities for example. Yet in the past week MS has been all over the bloomin place, trending on twitter, on the news, featuring on talk shows…

And I thought I was special.

Obviously an increase in awareness is excellent. On the other hand, however, there has been the usual sensationalism and pessimism that goes hand in hand with publicity. The old ‘can you die from MS’ misapprehension has reared it’s ugly head again. (The answer, by the way, is no although those with MS can expect a slightly shorter life expectancy than otherwise might be expected.) As has the ‘I gave my child MS’ myth. (If you ask my mum – yes she did – if you ask a medical practitioner – no she didn’t).

So good on you Mr O for admitting your membership of the MS club. Your membership card and pin badge should be in the post. It entitles you to an unlimited pass to the neurology department of your local hospital. And if you’re really lucky, a bingo dabber …

If this continues though, I’m going to have to relinquish my own membership and get something that’s, well, more exclusive. 😉


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