I love movies. When they are well made or innovative or emotionally connected or all of the above, movies are my favorite thing of all the things.

Last week I saw A Quiet Place and experienced something for the first time as a movie-lover. I felt the weight of the world, the stakes of a family’s life force, the purest essence of joy at a woman giving birth against all odds, the clear and present knowledge that we all have one life in this body and one chance to live fully in our grace and humanity and love.

There is a climatic moment in this movie, and I realized as this scene began that my hands had been clamped to my mouth for some time. I was also basically incapable of removing them – out of fear of making a sound – because this is a movie where you feel the need to be quiet.

As the tension began to build and I knew the main character was going to have to give birth, my body tensed and I was literally paralyzed. And at the height of the scene, the wildest moment of uncontrollable pain and release, I let go of my hand from my mouth and burst into tears. As if it was happening to me. Crazy.

I’ve shared this experience with a few friends who also saw the movie and there are mixed emotions. Some people were overcome like I was; some not so much. Obviously, my opinion of a movie is just that – an opinion – but what the heck happened to me? Why such a visceral and overwhelming sense of living each moment with these fictional characters?

Maybe I could not have had this reaction or these feelings before my MS diagnosis. The more I meditate and the more I step into everything with mindfulness and intention, I simply feel more.

One more movie, one more day, one more gift. Joy all over the damn place and I am grateful, grateful, grateful.

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• Diagnosed with MS in April 2017 • MS Support Group Founder 🌟I view my disease as a gift instead of a burden🌟

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