Reclaiming the Holidays After a Neurologic Diagnosis
The challenges of a significant progressive neurologic condition like MS, Alzheimer's disease, or Parkinson's disease can be particularly pronounced during the holidays, and many people experience grief and loss at this time, but often they find ways to enjoy the celebrations again. In our Holiday Gifts feature, we talk to people who've been through the process who share their advice for reclaiming the holiday spirit after a neurologic diagnosis.
What MS Taught Me About the Holidays
Before she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, this young woman pulled out all the stops at Christmas--baking cookies, cleaning the house top to bottom, and decorating every room in the house. After her diagnosis, spending time with family became her biggest priority and she conserved her energy accordingly. In this essay, she describes how she came to this realization..
Make Holiday Shopping Easier
Shelley Peterman Schwarz has had MS for more than 30 years. In that time, she's discovered or invented all the tricks of making life easier and shared them in six books in the Tips for Making Life Easier series (Demos Medical Publishing). Here she shares her tips for making the holidays more manageable and less stressful.
A Simpler Christmas
The author's childhood Christmases were exuberant, crowded, and joyous and her mother was an important and engaged presence. Now that her mother has dementia, the author has found new and meaningful ways—most of them simpler and quieter—to celebrate the holidays. Read more in the author's Speak Up essay.
Actor Blair Underwood Is a Passionate HIV/AIDS Activist
To mark World AIDS day earlier this month, we are reposting our feature on actor Blair Underwood (L.A. Law, Sex and the City, Madea's Family Reunion) who is a passionate activist on behalf of people with HIV/AIDS. Founder of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) Blair Underwood Healthcare Center in Washington, DC, Underwood works especially hard to raise awareness of neuro-AIDS, which happens when the virus affects the central nervous system or from side effects of drugs used to treat the disease. Neurologic complications are seen in more than 50 percent of adults with HIV and can cause confusion, forgetfulness, behavioral changes, headaches, and loss of sensation in the arms and legs.