This morning we thank Wendy Brookhouse for sharing her experience of watching her father battle ALS. Thank you Wendy and Al for creating awareness by sharing your story!
Since April 2007, my dad, Al Widiger, has been battling the effects of ALS. Three years after diagnosis, he is now using Hospice care to provide support and strength. He can no longer ambulate more than a few steps, he relies on a wheelchair for mobility. He is able to talk between struggling breaths, nows read electronically using his "Kindle", and, while it takes time and effort, still enjoys a good steak every now and then.
In true fashion, my father remains positive and focused on living for the present. Recently side effects of the morphine he now takes left him bed ridden and too weak to perform many 'simple' tasks. As I fed dad dinner in bed, he paused after each bite to catch his breath and swallow. After a few minutes he stated, "great food, I gotta tell my friend's about this place".
There are times I wonder how hard it must be to live in his shoes. I take for granted so many things in my daily life. It's during simple acts like feeding him dinner that my dad took a moment to enjoy the situation, regardless of circumstance. After 35 years, I realize my dad continues to teach me how to live, regardless of how easy it may be.