Today I was going to post my usual monthly blog from MD Canada; however, I felt the need to write about something a little different. This blog will be different than previous posts and it will be very “raw”. Meaning, I am not going to read it ten times and edit it until its “perfect”. I am going to write exactly as it comes.
I am sure by now you have all heard about “The Ice Bucket Challenge” and are well aware of what ALS is. I am positive more than half of you have never even heard of it before. I didn’t have a clue what it was until I had do some research for it a couple years back for a piece of writing I was doing. The disease was cruel in every sense. It had no mercy, and it had no patience.
I came across a story of a young man with ALS, Anthony Carbajal. His story is not the only one out there; if you simply type “ALS Story” into YouTube, you will find hundreds. His was special to me though. Here was a young man who watched his grandmother battle the terrible disease. That alone is enough to break your heart. Then on top of that, his mother got ALS. This is your mother, the woman who is your everything. The woman who can put a Band-Aid on anything and make it feel better. The woman who you can depend on. How can I begin to describe what it would feel like to watch her slowly whither away? How do I begin to even comprehend that…
You grow up, watching someone you love battle the disease until it takes them. You know it runs in the family, but you feel safe now. Then suddenly your mother get’s it and you begin to panic. What if I’m next? Well… What happens if you are? You know the answer before the doctor even says anything. And how do you go from there? How do you forget the life you planned and live a new one? The life he had is just a dream now.
A moment ago, everything was okay. Then something terrible happened. Something you didn’t see coming. Now you watch your body changing and there’s nothing you can do. I cannot begin to understand what he is going through. ALS is a scary disease, as most are. This one seems to change everything within a blink of an eye. You can’t button your shirt, walk, talk, and eventually breath. You simply sit there and let it happen because what other choice do you have? It is more powerful, it has taken every right from your body, and it takes complete control. To know this fate is upon you and no matter how much you wish for it to go away, it won’t ever quit. We all have something that is trying to defeat us…so what happens when you can’t fight? When you’re told something and it changes everything. How do you go on?
I understand pharmaceutical companies want to make a profit, but it can’t always be about that. I know I sound crazy, and having a finance degree makes me even crazier. But nothing I do is ever for money. Money is an object. Sure you can’t survive without it, but sometimes you have to take risks, you have to stand up for something that nobody else wants, and you have to believe in something greater. If everything you do and every choice you make in life has to do with money, you’re going the wrong way. There are people out there who are testing, researching, never giving up hope, and I know one day this will all go away. I believe there is an answer for everything. We would not be left on this earth if there wasn’t. It will come and I will wish for it every day of my life. Nobody’s life is perfect, nobody goes through life without having a few battles to get through, but I hope one day we all have a fighting chance.
The Ice Bucket Challenge is amazing and it has brought attention to a disease that needs to be defeated. The challenge has spoken so loudly to the global population that it’s impossible to hear what anyone is saying. This is what we need. Anthony, your struggles are also what show your strengths. I can see how strong of an individual you are just within those three minutes of watching your video. The light within your heart outshines everything else. I wish I could make it go away and I think with all the support and attention, there is hope. There is always hope, and it always comes to you when you least expect it to. Be strong and do not give up.
If you want to check out Anthony’s video please click here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h07OT8p8Oik Go to the two minute mark to get the story.
And if you want to donate please click here:
The greatest test of courage on earth is to bear defeat without losing heart –