Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Take a Flying Leap!

The calendar which serves as the standard calendar throughout most of the world has both common and leap years.  This was first established during the reign of Julius Caesar.  A common year has 365 days and a leap year has 366, with the extra day on February 29th.  A leap year occurs every four years to synchronize the calendar year with the solar year.  The solar year is the time it takes the earth to complete its orbit around the sun, or about 365 ¼ days.  However, the length of the solar year is slightly less than that, so three times every four hundred years, it is omitted.  So how did leap year get its name?  The day that a certain event falls on moves one day each year.  If Christmas was on a Monday last year, it would be on a Tuesday this year.  When February 29th is added in the leap year, the days after that date are moved forward.  So, if Christmas was on a Monday last year, it will be on a Wednesday instead of a Tuesday.  It has “leaped” a day.
Are you confused yet?? I am!!  Funny how things that should be simple are explained in such a complicated manner.  That is the way it is with medical terminology.  There are so many easy ways to just say something without going into a lot of in-depth explanations about something.
Take, for instance, MS.  In simple terms, multiple means many and sclerosis means scars.  Although some people only have a few scars on their brain or spinal cord, scars showing up on an MRI is one of the major means of diagnosing MS. 
The body’s immune system attacks itself in MS patients.  The white blood cells attack the fatty covering (myelin sheath) that insulates and protects the nerves.  Healthy nerves become exposed and mixed or abnormal messages are sent to the various parts of the body.  Since the brain may send a message to one part of the body that ends up in an entirely different part, everyone’s MS symptoms can be different.   
When I was in school, we used to have an Olympic games day.  We would have races, broad jump contests, push up contests and all types of physical activities.  Ribbons would be handed out to the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners.  I won a couple of ribbons in these games and was very proud of them.
Although my physical “leaping” days are  over, I leap for joy with each day, thankful to God that He has blessed me more than I could ever have hoped for and given me another day to praise Him!

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