Sunday, May 09, 2010

Sunday Scribblings - Courage

Many think that having a terminal illness with no cure makes you courageous. It does in cases of ALS where the disease ravages your body quickly, until you are a prisoner, unable to move. Most people lose one ability after another until the end, leaving no time to do anything but survive one day at a time. I do think I was very blessed to have lived 19yrs with a disease that takes most lives in 1-4 years.

I never thought I was courageous when they gave me the bad news (assuming my time was short) because I had two little girls to raise. I HAD to survive for them, so I took them on adventures and taught them skills they would need later. I was honest, loving and asked a lot of them. I survived 13 years devoted to them and I was thrilled as they each graduated to adults. With a happy outlook at every progressive stage we lived live fully. Now they resent my living and moving away to the mountains(even though they are grown and married). They feel robbed of a normal childhood and I owe them to live close. Growing up in fear of losing me has effected who they are now (along with DNA). They love me but they don't get too close. The real courage is living without their appreciation or gratitude.

I thought I was most courageous, when my youngest graduated, in seeking a male companion on the internet, after 13 years living with ALS. I put myself and prognosis out there expecting rejection but instead found an amazing man. He loved me and married me, on a beach in Kauai, for the duration. He really has no idea how hard it may get but he has made a courageous choice. His courage made mine stronger and a blessing.

I guess I'm saying courage can be found in the big things and the little things. Everyday that we awake and start our day we are making a choice to live life fully and with courage. It may not turn out that way but we keep trying. We can reach out to someone in need, be grateful and love fully. That's courageous!

May is ALS Awareness Month, feel free to ask me anything.


Lucy said...

you and dave both are the ultimate definition of courage. I feel so naive but not until I read 'dna' did i realize that this must be a hereditary disease. Is that right?
another question would be is there a test family members can take to determine if they've inherited the gene for AlS?? If so are there any preventive measures that can be taken?
I am fearful the answer to my last two questions is no. If so, I can't imagine how concerned you must be for your family. There are no words to give comfort to you so I will just tell you how much your courage propels me to be the best person i can be... AND to continue to educate it Forward!We must find a cure.

Tinker said...

I think you are both courageous and inspiring.
Hope your day has been filled with love and joy. Wishing you a very happy Mother's Day, Tammy! XOXO

Giggles said...

Your bravery is truly inspirational!!
You and Dave are so lucky to have found each other...two beautiful souls melded against all odds! How wonderful.

Sadly daughters can be too harsh, we forget to humanize our mothers. You did your girls a favor by moving on! One day they will see things so clear, sadly they'll have huge regrets! In the meantime, one beautiful day at a time in love!

Big Hugs oh Brave on!
Love Sherrie

Forgetfulone said...

I know you are one courageous lady! Keep on keepin' on, as they use to say in the 70's! Love ya.

Tabor said...

Tammy, I am so glad that you see this distance from your daughters as fear. They're so terrified of your illness and how they will loose you that they build that safe wall. Indeed if you lived closer I do not think that would change much. You cannot worry about their regrets.

anthonynorth said...

I'll give you another word for courage.

turquoise cro said...

God Bless YOU both!!! and all your family! I LOVE YOU Tammy!! I'm soOOOoO glad YOU found Dave!!(((((Tammy&Dave))))))

Carina said...

You're right, there are so many different kinds of courage. God bless you and your courageous man!

Anonymous said...

You both are courage 'personified'...Good wishes to u both.:)

sg beatty said...

The courage you show the world is truly amazing. I would hope that I could be half the person you are given similar circumstance. Thank you for sharing. I have a friend who was just diagnosed with ALS
and she is really scared. I am going to tell her about you and have her read your blog. maybe it will help her

oldegg said...

There is no doubt about your courage and we are glad of it because you are an inspiration to others.