After seeing our Ice Bucket Challenge video on Facebook last week, AlexaRae Antekeier, a friend of Corey’s from high school who now works for a PR firm in Chicago, sent him a message asking if we would mind if she pitched my ALS story to a couple of news outlets. Corey said it would be fine and less than two hours later a senior editor from TODAY.com, The Today Show’s website, emailed him to set up an interview.
Throughout that day Corey kept sending Mark and I questions about our thoughts on the Ice Bucket Challenge. We were excited but never thought it would be published and then on Sunday morning while we were having brunch at the Lake House in Muskegon with family and friends Mark received an email from Corey saying that our article was up on TODAY.com. As we started to read the article and saw our family’s pictures I started to cry because this ALS journey we are on has brought so many emotional moments that sometimes it seems like I’m watching a movie. My biggest hope is that they continue to find helpful medicines and hopefully someday a cure for ALS and other awful diseases.
Thank you so much for using your talents to help raise awareness for ALS.
We love you!
After a week of family fun with our out of town guests, my daughter Kelly and my sister-in-law Patti came up with the idea of doing a big Ice Bucket Challenge with some family and friends before our visiting family members head back to Florida. If you don’t know, the Ice Bucket Challenge raises money for ALS research by challenging people to either dump a bucket of ice water over their heads or donate $100 to the ALS Association.
So yesterday afternoon Mark, Bryan, Kelly, Ashley, Chris, Harrison, Patti, Luz, Vicki, Billy, Anouk, Christopher, Monica, Landon, Skylar, Jan Harris, Colleen and Greg Paquin, Nancy Paquin and I went out to the boat dock and participated in the challenge. I don’t think anybody thought to include me in the actual challenge, so I volunteered. After everybody else had gone, Mark stood me up and Bryan and Kelly dumped buckets of cold water over our heads. It was beautiful.
To keep the challenge going, I would like to call out the following three groups and give them one week to pour ice water over their heads or donate money to the ALS Association.
- My friends and former colleagues at Transnation Title in Muskegon.
- The entire Beckman family.
- The entire Lambert family.
Thank you to everyone who participated in this silly and wonderful challenge. Because of you someday there will be hope for people with this disease.
I read this story about ten years ago and it continues to have special meaning for me and for my children.
Recently I overheard a mother and daughter in their last moments together at the airport. They had announced the departure. Standing near the security gate, they hugged and the mother said, “I love you and I wish you enough.”
The daughter replied, “Mom, our life together has been more than enough. Your love is all I ever needed. I wish you enough, too, Mom.”
They kissed and the daughter left. The mother walked over to the window where I was seated. Standing there I could see she wanted and needed to cry.
I tried not to intrude on her privacy but she welcomed me in by asking,”Did you ever say goodbye to someone knowing it would be forever?”
“Yes, I have,” I replied. “Forgive me for asking, but why is this a forever good-bye?”
“I am old and she lives so far away. I have challenges ahead and the reality is the next trip back will be for my funeral,” she said.
“When you were saying goodbye, I heard you say, ‘I wish you enough.’ May I ask what that means?”
She began to smile. “That’s a wish that has been handed down from other generations. My parents used to say it to everyone.”
She paused for a moment and looked up as if trying to remember it in detail and she smiled even more. “When we said, I wish you enough, we were wanting the other person to have a life filled with just enough good things to sustain them.”
Then turning toward me, she shared the following as if she were reciting it from memory. I wish you enough sun to keep your attitude bright, I wish you enough rain to appreciate the sun more. I wish you enough happiness to keep your spirit alive. I wish you enough pain so that the smallest joys in life appear much bigger. I wish you enough gain to satisfy your wanting. I wish you enough loss to appreciate all that you possess. I wish you enough hellos to get you through the final goodbye.
She then began to cry and walked away.
To all my friends and loved ones, I wish you enough.
Maya (12) and Jacob (9) are our great niece and nephew who live in Virginia but are visiting their grandparents here in Muskegon. Last week they came to see us but before they visited my sister Judy, their grandma, told them my speech was difficult to understand but if they looked at my mouth while I was talking it might help them to understand.
It didn’t take Maya and Jacob long and they started to understand almost every thing I said. Jacob was so cute because he stood real close to me and as I would say a word he would mouth it while watching me so intently.
Maya was also very sweet and really great at understanding me. On Saturday she brought me a beautiful gift she had made for me. It was a Live Simple Love Like Crazy wall hanging and a beautiful handmade lace card. In the card she wrote “You are so brave and full of hope and happiness.” On the wall hanging she put a quote: “Ask and it will be given to you; search and you will find; knock and the door will be opened for you.”
Maya and Jacob made me feel so incredibly loved. I think they are very brave, full of hope and happiness, too.
I love you Maya and Jacob.