Multiple sclerosis

Extraordinary machine

March is shaping up to be one mother of a month.

I honestly don’t know how I will pull it off, from the big DC trip to projects and more projects to MS Awareness Week.

I know I said in the beginning that having MS was the universe’s way of telling me to slow down.

So what do I do? Step on the gas and blaze ahead like there’s no tomorrow. (I’m a little stubborn that way.)

That is, until I hit one of many inevitable speed bumps while on my journey. Silly me.

Maybe it’s time for a little musical inspiration. It always puts me in a better mood.

I read a story the other day about another woman with MS who has embraced a favorite song of mine as her anthem.

“Extraordinary Machine,” by Fiona Apple, is a sly little piece of musical whimsy (subversively twee, or tweely subversive?), and it only struck me when reading this woman’s story just how much the lyrics apply to any of us with such a disease.

We are extraordinary machines … even as MS commandeers parts of our bodies and minds, we manage to keep going, albeit more carefully, more deliberately.

We’ll be OK. We’ll adjust. Just you see. We’ll make the most of it …

I certainly haven’t been shopping for any new shoes
And
I certainly haven’t been spreading myself around
I still only travel by foot
And by foot it’s a slow climb
But I’m good at being uncomfortable, so
I can’t stop changing all the time

I noticed that my opponent is always on the go
And won’t go slow so as not to focus, and I notice
He’ll hitch a ride with any guide
As long as they go fast from whence he came
But he’s no good at being uncomfortable, so
He can’t stop staying exactly the same

If there was a better way to go then it would find me
I can’t help it, the road just rolls out behind me
Be kind to me
Or treat me mean 
I’ll make the most of it
I’m an extraordinary machine 

I seem to you to seek a new disaster every day
You deem me doomed to clean my view
And be at peace and lay
I mean to prove I mean to move in my own way 
And say I’ve been getting along
For long before you came into the play

I am the baby of the family, it happens
So
Everybody cares
And wear the sheep’s clothes while they chaperone
Curious, you’re looking down your nose at me
While you appease
Courteous to try and help
But let me set your mind at ease

If there was a better way to go then it would find me
I can’t help it, the road just rolls out behind me
Be kind to me
Or treat me mean
I’ll make the most of it
I’m an extraordinary machine

Do I so worry you?
No need to hurry to my side
That’s very kind
But it’s to no avail
I don’t want the veil of flowers, no
Everything will be just fine

If there was a better way to go then it would find me
I can’t help it, the road just rolls out behind me
Be kind to me
Or treat me mean
I’ll make the most of it
I’m an extraordinary machine

— Fiona Apple

2 thoughts on “Extraordinary machine”

  1. Hi! I’ve been reading your web site for a while now and finally got the courage to go ahead and give you a shout out from New Caney Tx! Just wanted to say keep up the excellent work!

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