Friday, May 27, 2011


Memorial Day is traditionally a time of remembering our veterans and loved ones that have passed on. For some reason, this Memorial Day has me remembering all the wonderful people I have met since I started looking for more information about RLS. The first National Patient meeting was in St. Louis and it was thrilling. For the first time I was surrounded by people who knew exactly what I was going through. And there were speakers, doctors and researchers who not only believed we had something wrong but were treating and studying this strange disorder! I had read enough to know that I was not alone; but to find people from across the United States and Canada that suffered like me, had more coping strategies, and even more information was just incredible.

At the Patient Meeting in California I met so many people who became so important to me. There were 2-3 ladies from Canada and I was so impressed that they had come all that way, not only to learn more but to add so much to the discussions. The people on the RLS Board of Directors were so outgoing and supportive. I volunteered for several positions--the most important one at that time was on the Support Group Advisory Board. One of the ladies from Canada had also volunteered for that board. There is a whole story about how we became friends, not only with each other but with a wonderful lady from Virginia and a very talented man from Seattle. If you ever see me somewhere and want to hear that story, just let me know.

I started hanging out on the RLS Discussion Board where I found some interesting, knowledgeable, caring people. And I was fortunate enough to get to meet several of them at later Patient or Regional Meetings. A certain lady I met became my Yellow Rose of Texas. These people are from all over the US; Texas, Arizona, Indiana, Florida, Illinois... There are a few from other countries that I have never met but hope to one day.

Each of these people are incredibly talented too. In my experience, people with RLS seem to be more artistic and creative. My friends are painters, photographers, writers, jewelry and stained glass makers, quilters and the list goes on and on.

These people are still an important part of my life. They support me when I need shoring up, they call me when I need an ear, they email, facebook, send messages through the moon and hugs by fireflies. There has never been a time when they have not been there for me. Despite the awfullness of this disorder, I am so very thankful that I have had the opportunity to meet and become friends with such wonderful people.

I encourage each of you to look for the silver lining of this disorder. Look for the chance to meet others who truly understand what you live with daily, who might become a life-long friend or need the support you have to give. Be kind to one another--some of the best friendships come out of arguments where each is willing to listen to the other.

As for me, I'm going to sit on my porch this weekend, talk to the moon, watch the fireflies and think about my friends. I am blessed.


Julie said...

I personally like this blog site. gives me somewhere else to go. Since I have joined the RLS foundation, which hasn't been long, it has helped me tremendously. I enjoy talking to everyone and hearing what everyone has to say.

Anonymous said...

Kathy, I thoroughly understand your comments about the support from other RLS/WED sufferers. We are all there for each other. If I try to help someone today, I know that some day (or night), someone will do the same for me. Also, because there are people from many countries on the RLS discussion board, the time differences mean that it is never very long before someone is logging on.

Polar Bear