Yu first started to play the piano as soon her hands were big enough – at age five. She had begged her parents for lessons. She can recall the years she spent waiting for her hands to grow were the longest in her life.
“It was just in my heart,” Yu says of her passion for music.
She went on to teach hundreds of people to play – from young students starting out just as she had to elderly students in their 80s – and performed for thousands, including at competitions around the world.
Yu now spends her days living a life impacted, but not defined, by MS.
She had to take time to reflect about her life’s path without piano and ultimately discovered the core of what she loved about music.
“Piano has been a bridge for me to connect with people,” she says. “So I’ve set out to create relationships in different ways.”
Instead of piano, she now serves on the ESL Cafe Team at her church to teach English as a second language to newcomers. She participates in activities through her church and goes to the gym three times a week.
Behind her bedroom door, she keeps a photo of herself as a child, beaming with her first piano.
That smile still lives on Yu’s face, now powered by different things.
“Resilience is a really good word to use for learning piano,” Yu says.
“Living with MS is similar. There are days that are frustrating but those pass, and you need to strive forward.”