My unexpected journey began when I collapsed at Macy’s in San Francisco to the sound of Christmas carols and bells ringing. A few days later, a beige man handed me a beige folder with a dark diagnosis that would dominate the rest of my life: Multiple Sclerosis, or MS. Despite living in a rapidly deteriorating body, I still managed to climb and get stuck at the top of Mt. Fuji, fall on my face in the Galapagos Islands, get the girl, move to Stockholm, and have a daughter. My MS worsened and set off a tidal wave, a tsunami inside of me that ravaged my body and crushed my lungs. I lived through twenty cases of pneumonia, three years with a respirator, a year without eating, a thirty-day coma, but still came out on the other side. This, my bumpy ride, has made me appreciate life all the more – the importance of feeling, smiling, and loving – to lead with kindness and to make space for spirituality. The MS Diaries is a memoir that seeks to impart the journey inside one man’s mind struggling with a severe chronic illness through uncensored personal anecdotes and humorous situations, like swinging naked through the London Hilton.
Meet the author
Jakob Vendle has secondary progressive Multiple Sclerosis, which he has been living with for the last fifteen years. He lived in the U.S. for twenty years, where he met his wife, they now reside in Stockholm with their daughter. For someone who can only move his thumb a twitch, life has not beaten him down. After writing this memoir, he has embarked on writing another book; a Stockholm noir crime novel.