Living with multiple sclerosis, Learning to make the world accessible, Loving life with all of its challenges

A DreAmy Life

We know. It’s corny. He’s Dre, I’m Amy – together we’re DreAmy. But as corny as it might be, it works on a couple of different fronts. The first is, let’s face it, we are a little corny. The second?  We’d like to think we’re living the dream (see, corny).

Dancing at our wedding

Who we are short version: Happily married for going on six years, happily dating for around eleven years before that, two kids (step kids for Amy) three dogs, a house, two cars.

It was our common love of life that brought us together. Hiking, camping, fishing, scuba diving… If it involves getting out and exploring there’s a good chance we’re up for it in one form or another. True, Amy’s idea of hiking might involve a steep incline and muscle burn while Dre prefers something a bit more leisurely along a stream that involves a fishing rod, but we’ve figured all of that out. And as our relationship has grown and developed, we also found that Amy’s love of writing and Dre’s lifelong hobby of photography and video ultimately come together to be a perfect blend for a blog. Dre has the patience to review hours of video to cut together clips that document our adventures, and Amy has the overwhelming desire to turn each of them into a story.

What we are also figuring out is living as a couple with the challenge of progressive multiple sclerosis. Dre was diagnosed with MS well before we ever started dating and we lived for the first seven years of our relationship without too much impact from the disease. Over the past few years, however, MS has become more of a factor in our day to day life. A few years ago Dre was forced to go on disability as a result of the effects of his MS and over the past few years we have been adjusting to living with a more prominent display of the disease.

Amy hiking with the pups

While we have had to adjust to many of the impacts and effects of the disease, we have come to the clear realization that it makes us even more committed to enjoying and embracing every day. Dre’s mom also lived with multiple sclerosis, and it was her model that showed us that life does not end because you have MS, or any other challenge. Dre’s mom wouldn’t let MS defeat her or get in the way of accomplishing her dreams or goals. Whether it was learning to swim when she was 65 years old and or perusing the Boardwalk at Ocean City, there was too much life to enjoy for her to let it pass her by because she was in a scooter. At the same time, Dre’s dad never questioned that she couldn’t do exactly what she set her mind to. They supported each other, held each other up, challenged each other, and most importantly loved each other through every joy, every difficulty, and every day.

Dre teaching the kids to fish
Dre teaching the kids to fish

It is that same model that Dre and I try to live up to each day. This doesn’t mean that there aren’t times that are more difficult than others, or mornings that it’s tough to get out of bed, or… you know, all of the things that make life hard to cope with whatever challenge you might be facing. But what we do try to do when things get tough is remember that this is the life we have, it’s beautiful, and what we will have at the end of it is exactly what we put into it. So we’d like to make it a good one.

It’s with that spirit that we write this blog. We enjoy finding the pieces of life to celebrate – small and large – and that’s what we want to share with the world. And ultimately, what we ‘d like to spread across the world is that every day can be a DreAmy day. (See, corny!)