Old 08-25-2017, 04:23 PM #1 (permalink)
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Default Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

In January, I went for a walk when I was in Chicago for work. I was alarmed to feel my right foot drop as I walked. Nowhere in my imagination did I think it would be ALS. I got a neurologist appointment and he did some tests and sent me for first a neck and then head MRI. The report stated that there was suspicion of ALS. At that moment, because of my symptoms I knew I had ALS and, as we do, I went in to shock and immediately talked to my wife and kids about it and I cried. But, my hopeless optimism kicked in and I thought maybe I had neurosyphilis or heavy metal poisoning.

Yesterday, I went to the ALS clinic in Vancouver and the needle EMG verified lower motor neuron involvement and that I did have ALS. I can brag that I took it well as I had already gone through my shock earlier.

So here I sit, contemplating my new reality. Not knowing how this disease will progress and knowing that no one can tell me.

But here is what I do know. I had a troubled childhood and young adulthood. But for the last 25 years I have had the best life I could imagine. A wonderful, strong and beautiful wife, three incredible, engaged children, a loving mother and sister and a meaningful and fulfilling career with incredible co-workers. I have been paid enough to never want for anything, to be able to support my family and even own a beautiful heritage home in Vancouver. My life has been so blessed that I can't believe I didn't spend every minute marvelling at my luck.

I also realize I could have had a massive heart attack rather than foot drop and I would have never had a chance to tell my family how much I love them (and show them too.) So the time I have left now is "bonus time." I will spend my time being the person I should have been. Not selfish, impatient or judgemental. I will respect the time I have left and not squander it as if I expected it to last forever.

Thank you for being here and welcoming a stranger in need.
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Old 08-25-2017, 04:33 PM #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

Welcome. I too am sad you need to be here/ happy you found us.

Your introduction is very touching. I look forward to getting to know you.

Your attitude is wonderful and inspiring. Please know, though, if/ when you have low moments ( we all do) we are here for you then as well. We celebrate the good and support you through the bad.

If you get a chance look at some of stories of hope. I think you will probably add a few chapters there soon!
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Old 08-25-2017, 04:44 PM #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

Hi Ted from a fellow New West'er.

This is an excellent forum and you would be hard pressed to find a finer group of people anywhere. Sad you find yourself here, but welcome!

~Fiona
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Old 08-25-2017, 06:21 PM #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

Sorry that you find yourself here, Ted, but happy to hear that there is a sense of purpose for this journey for you, and that you have a strong family and professional network, both of which will surely support you as you have supported others.

Best,
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Old 08-25-2017, 06:22 PM #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

Thanks Nikki, I look forward to getting to know you too.
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Old 08-25-2017, 06:23 PM #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

Where abouts in New West are you Fiona? I am at 2nd and Royal. Thanks for the welcome.
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Old 08-25-2017, 06:24 PM #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

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Originally Posted by lgelb View Post
Sorry that you find yourself here, Ted, but happy to hear that there is a sense of purpose for this journey for you, and that you have a strong family and professional network, both of which will surely support you as you have supported others.

Best,
Laurie
Thank you Laurie. I forgot to mention friends too!
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Old 08-25-2017, 06:35 PM #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

Ted,
I'm so happy you have family and friends to count on and that your attitude is so positive. I hate that you have to be here but I'm glad you found us.
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Old 08-25-2017, 08:10 PM #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

Ted,
Mine also started out as difficulty walking and foot drop earlier this year. So it will be interesting to compare our courses over time.
I wish you the best, quality time with your friends and family, and good experiences in your future.
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Old 08-25-2017, 08:21 PM #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

Ted,

I'm just over the hill from you- by the middle school/works yard. It's likely we've walked our dogs by your place many times!
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Old 08-25-2017, 08:51 PM #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

So sorry to hear of your dx. I love your attitude! What a wonderful way to look at things. You have found a great place for information and support.
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Old 08-25-2017, 10:02 PM #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

I wish you the best good fortune meeting your new objectives, Ted. Your move from troubled youth to successful family man shows you have the right stuff to inspire the rest of us.
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Old 08-25-2017, 11:23 PM #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

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Ted,
Mine also started out as difficulty walking and foot drop earlier this year. So it will be interesting to compare our courses over time.
I wish you the best, quality time with your friends and family, and good experiences in your future.
Karen,

Please, let's keep in touch and compare notes. I am going to ask about "transient spasticity" in another string.

Best of luck and slow progression to you!
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Old 08-26-2017, 12:07 AM #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

I am very sorry to welcome you here, but welcome nonetheless.

As you already know and as some many have already said, this is a wonderful place with many warm, talented, and caring people.

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Old 08-26-2017, 12:52 AM #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sad to be here, happy to know you are here

Thanks for your welcome Mike and Steve. I am looking forward to getting to know you all.
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