Don’t worry about my battles, I’ll pick my own

At some point in your life someone will have told you to pick your battles, as you can’t fight on many different fronts without wearing yourself out.

In essence, this is true, as your mind and body can’t support you if you choose to stand your ground over everything. Let’s face it, we all know that experiencing crappy service in a restaurant is favourable to experiencing sexism or racism and maybe isn’t worth getting het up about.

However, here’s where I disagree with the old adage: It’s my decision what to get angry about.

If I pay for a hazelnut latte at Starbucks and end up with a peppermint hot chocolate, I’m going to demand satisfaction, as something as small as drinking my favourite coffee can make me feel better and sometimes a bit more human.

In the same vein, if something has happened in my personal life and I feel like I’ve been wronged, I will stand my ground. And it’s when something like a fight with my family or a run in with a less-than-understanding stranger has upset me that I’m told to pick my battles and think of my health.

Think of my health? I do every moment of every single day, so I don’t really need to be reminded – that is unless I wake up with amnesia, then you can feel free to tell me that I have a chronic illness and need to think about it.

It really irks me that someone thinks they can use the fact that I have MS to diffuse an argument or confrontation. Yes I am indeed living with a disease, but no you can’t tell me to shut up because of it.

Only I am allowed to use my MS as an excuse, for example “I can’t take out the bins today because I’m ill” or “you need to make me a cheesecake immediately as I think it can cure me”.

As much as I know that the people telling me to pick my battles love me, they can’t change the way I feel about things. I do have to be a bit more careful because I’m living with a chronic illness, but I am still the same person that I was two years ago and the same things still irritate me.


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