Cathy Chester | An Empowered Spirit

How My First Video “What I Wish I Knew” Will Inspire You

A few months ago my husband, son and I were asked to be part of a video series on living, and supporting those living, with MS. The theme of the initiative was:

I have MS. I have a team. I have a future. 

Here’s the trailer:

I was thrilled about this important endeavor and the three of us jumped at the chance to be part of it.

I relished the notion of using my voice on camera, something completely different than expressing my thoughts through the written word.

I sat down and wrote my script, polishing it until I felt my message was both interesting and informative. I watched my favorite TED talks for pointers on how to look on camera. I purchased a new outfit that would be comfortable and chic. And I held my breath the morning of the shoot as the makeup artist applied her palette of colors to my face.

I was told my segment should focus on the idea of “What I Wish I Knew.

What did I wish the younger ME knew after being diagnosed? What didn’t I know then that I know now? What lessons did I learn along the way? What pearly words of wisdom could I pass on to help others manage their journey better than I did?

I hope you’ll find time to sit back, listen to my story and tell me what you think. Go easy on me! This is my first time alone on camera….

My next blog post will be another video called “It Takes a Team” with my husband, son and me. We didn’t write a script. We simply sat on a couch and spoke directly from our hearts.


You can view other videos in the MS TEAMWORKS series on the Catamount Medical Education website. Subjects include The Roadmap to Motherhood, Integrative Medicine, I’m Getting Worse – What Does That Mean, I Wish My Healthcare Professional Knew, How I Manage My MS, and many more.

My thanks to the people at the Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers, Catamount Medical Education and support from EMD Serono for this wonderful experience.


18 thoughts on “How My First Video “What I Wish I Knew” Will Inspire You

  1. Claudia Schmidt

    Hi Cathy, This is wonderful! I remember when you and I talked over lunch, you said “We’re story tellers” and it has stuck with me. I was enthralled throughout the video because you wove your message of empowerment with the story of your life and it makes it all the more powerful. I would love to read the story of your life – I hope some day you write a book. And, I agree with Paulette – you are such a natural on camera and you could do a talk show w/others with MS to get the message out. Bravo, you are an inspiration to all. Love, Claudia

  2. Tina Trott

    Cathy, Both your videos are amazing! You have helped so many patients with your journey. Please keep sharing. Hugs!! Tina #msteamworks

  3. Helene Cohen Bludman

    Cathy, I always knew you were a star, but my goodness, this is outstanding! You have such a presence in front of the camera — polished, professional, but also down-to-earth and honest. I love it, love you, and am in agreement that you need your own talk show! xoxo

  4. Donna Hanton

    This is a wonderful video, Cathy. You are eloquent and honest, and I love that your story makes your point. I know from my own experience that this is hard-won wisdom. Thank you for your voice.

  5. Sherry Robichaud

    Both are great videos, Cathy! What a great job.
    I ended the “I wish I knew” in tears. Touched home with me.
    “We should never give our power away. Our discussions we make in our life, are for our health.” Well said…

  6. Barbara Delaney

    You delivered your talk with courage and grace. I appreciate your heart-felt message that has meaning to every person who has ever encountered hardships in their journey, and isn’t that everyone of us! You inspire me to be more compassionate and understanding. God Bless my friend!

  7. Tammy

    So very proud FOR you and OF you, Cathy. I watch your entire presentation. Raw, honest and true, but sensitive, knowing and ever growing. Just like you. Courage is something that comes to us later in life. What a shame. We could all have used much more of it as we were growing up. No matter. When we find it, we are called upon to share its blessings. Speaking up and speaking out for ourselves and others is one on the most important spokes in the wheel of life. So very happy to see you here, hear your sharing. Thanks for that. Carry on, my dear, you’re doing quite well!

  8. Jo Ann Maxwell

    Very well done, Cathy! I wasn’t even aware that I had multiple sclerosis when I was pregnant. But I felt so good! Looking back during those two pregnancies I was the healthiest that I ever felt. I too had many misdiagnoses, as many of us have. I look forward to your next video!
    Jo Ann Maxwell recently posted…Synchronize–Daily PromptMy Profile

  9. Paul Giese

    Cathy, you are so inspiring. I hope others find this video as empowering and insightful as I have. Thank you so very much.

  10. Sue Simon.

    Cathy, thank you for sharing your story and telling it so eloquently. Your message is important for anyone living with a chronic illness. Thank you for being there for people who deal with illness everyday and for the advocates who try and make things better for all of us.

  11. Kathy @ SMART Living

    Hi Cathy! Congratulations for creating such a wonderful video for yourself and every single person who will see it. I have no doubt that it will reach and help many people. I also don’t doubt that you’ve walked a difficult path but you continue to prove that anyone can live a happy and fulfilling life NO MATTER WHAT. You have come such a very long way and continue to be an inspiration to all your writer friends AND for anyone struggling with a difficult diagnosis. ~Kathy

  12. ccziv

    Cathy, you are truly an inspiration. I particularly enjoyed the second video in this post. I have RA and fibromyalgia and I frequently make the mistake of identifying my *self* with my medical conditions.

    Thank you for this great mitzvah you are doing. You bring me hope.

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