What a blessing this past year has been working with MSAA. After having announced my multiple sclerosis (MS) publicly, I have become overwhelmed with ardent, sincere responses and appreciation, stories, and gratitude.
Through my role as an ambassador for MSAA, I had the wonderful honor of being recognized in the publication, Neurology Now. Managing editor Mike Smolinsky and photographer Annie Levy requested a photo shoot and interview with an individual living with multiple sclerosis to feature in their publication, and I was chosen. It was a great honor to work with these two professionals.
Having my own portrait taken is, to say the least, a rare occasion for me. I knew Annie’s body of work, her stunning portraiture. Looking through her lens was not intimidating for me, but rather, it seemed no different than looking straight into her kind eyes. I was able to relax, feel comfortable, and be me. And of course, that is every photographer’s dream.
Finding out we lived so near to one another in Brooklyn, Mike and I were able to take some time to grab a coffee and meet in-person. For someone so busy to take the special time out of their day to get to know a subject made me realize that I was working with a rare and world-class group of people. After a full, enriching conversation, Mike and I had to part, knowing full well we could have gone on, and on, and on sharing ideas and stories until the sun went down.
Being recognized and working with the team at Neurology Now was a true joy, and an honor. Because of all the intricacies involved living with MS as a young female photographer, it feels liberating to speak openly to people who want to listen. Throughout the month my mailbox has claimed the most touching letters from Neurology Now readers all throughout the country. Getting to know these people and their stories, as well as feeling their gratitude and openness, has really been the true blessing. There is something about anonymity that can be a catalyst for conversation and sharing, straight away. Without judgment or fear, I have never known or have gotten to know others through such open lines of communication.
A very tender thanks to Neurology Now, MSAA, and to all the readers out there who I can now call my friends.