Sunday, February 28, 2016


This week Matt and I talked about a lot of different things.

Accepting this disease has been difficult for him. He said he was 23 when they first suspected he had MS and how he wishes he had paid more attention to what the doctors said then. But he said “I was young and thought I was invincible.”  When Matt was 16 he had a really bad concussion from playing football and it wasn’t until He and Cindy had infertility issues that he saw an endocrinologist. The doctors think that the concussion caused his pituitary gland "to snap." With the help of the doctors, obviously they fixed the infertility problems! He thinks it (the concussion)all played a part in his illness, and damage to his brain. He said the disease didn’t really start to hit him until he was 47. (He’s 53 now) I asked him what he misses most about what he could do before and he said “Walk”, “I really miss that."  He said it’s so hard for him to go places and “get around” and “I have to go to the bathroom a lot and knowing where a restroom is”…." sometimes it’s just easier to stay home”. 
He told me again of how quickly the disease can change things and how “the reality just hits you.” 
The struggle is real. “Learn what you can, while you can” he told me, because "you don’t always have the time you think you will. “ 
We talked about how young our dad was when he passed, he was 55. I asked Matt about his Faith and if he believed that God was still there for him and he said “Oh Yeah”. 
He said he’s not ready to meet God yet, but he knows his own death is inevitable. 
Matt said he’s so grateful for his large family, because we look out for one another and having a big family is “really cool.”  Family history is so important and he’s thankful for our sister Dorene who traces those family roots and documents things. “That’s why it’s important to listen to older people, because they’ve been there." He said “we just don’t think to ask questions.” We think there will always be time, but there will not always be time.  It’s hard to believe we are becoming those older people now, leaving our legacy to our children.  After our mom died, I found where she had started her own autobiography and hearing her memories in her own words, was a gift that she left us - but how much better it would have been to have those conversations with her. We talked about our mother and he said how he wishes he could have “just one more day to talk to her”, and how much he loved her and missed her and that we grew up in “great times.”
That is why Matt likes this blog, to talk and remember and hopefully impart some knowledge and wisdom to his children.  “I’ve been in their shoes, I know exactly what they are going through.”  He also said that he would “never tell them anything to hurt them, I really just want to help.”  

We talked about things like technology, the technology we’ve seen change in our lifetime….think of what our parents saw! Matt remember his first cell phone was so big, in a bag and he thought he was “so cool”.  Remember the VCR - you know those old VHS Tapes? Yeah, we remember the first VCR we had and how in AWE our dad was. “Oh man”, Matt said… “He didn’t even know how to use it.”  Remember the old TV Antenna? Matt talked about how dad got that so he could get better reception to watch sports on TV. (Hmmm….guess THAT runs in the family after all) Heck, I remember when we got cable and had a remote…before that Matt and Todd would yell for me to come and change the channel, even if I wasn’t in the living room! (See Cindy, that remote thing goes way back….)  
When we are young, we think we’ll always be young, but life has a way of happening and we age and with that comes all of the things this game of life throws at you.  Matt’s big curveball in life has been MS, and “MS SUCKS” he said. “I love diet pepsi, but now I can’t even open the can and I spill it all over, it’s just so frustrating.” He reiterated that it’s so important to do your exercises and how he wished he had done more when he was younger. 

You can’t dwell on the past and what was, you have to deal with the here and now and he knows that.  He’s accepted he is where he is in life, in the progression of his disease and he just wants to tell his story and thoughts. As long as Matt has a story to tell, I will listen and share.  I’ve always looked up to my big brother and I always will! 

Matt enjoys all of the comments very much! He also is super excited about the MS Walk that is coming up on May 7.  We have over 20 people signed up for “Team O”! If you can join us that day please do! Sign up HERE.  If you can’t walk and want to donate to help find a cure for this disease…every little bit helps! 

Our Facebook Group also gives a place to leave a message that we can read to Matt as some people had trouble commenting on the blog. Click Here to Join. 

We are also hosting a coffee hour at church on March 20 after worship service and Matt will be there for a real live “Chat with Matt”!  March is MS awareness month and “Team O” will be on hand to serve donuts, coffee and conversation! Congregational UCC in Castalia, OH. Worship at 10 a.m., Coffee Hour following (Around 11 a.m.)


  1. Love reading your story Matt! You may not know it, but you were an important part of my younger life, meeting you through Tim Murray. I loved our visits with you and Cindy, great times, laughs and memories I'll cherish forever. Much love to you and the O's!

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  3. Love you Matt! You are such an inspiration and I am so proud of you. You always could make me laugh and I am grateful that I can follow your blog.

    Hugs to You, Cindy and all the Little O's and Mini O's on the way....Dena (your fav sis in law :) )