Saturday, 12 January 2013

Single with ALS

I am single with ALS. I didn't expect this. I didn't plan this. In fact my life was supposed to go completely differently. I was supposed to be in love with the girl I married in 1979. She was supposed to love me back. I was supposed to be in a committed, long-term relationship. I was supposed to have a woman with me who cares about me, in sickness and in health.

I left my wife in December 2011. That's over a year ago, about 11 months before I was diagnosed. I tried, but I just couldn't do it any more. We are in the midst of a divorce filled with challenge and acrimony. I understand why she is unhappy with the divorce. I don't think she understands why I was unhappy with the marriage. But there you go.

I am single with ALS, not an attractive profile for the dating scene. The problem is that my brain, soul and spirit are all intact. It's only my body that is dying. Even my body is only dying a bit at a time. The problem is that every week there is a new level of normal, slightly different than last week. Again, not an attractive profile for the date scene.

It's a real challenge to offer something a woman wants. I can't offer a lifetime together, except possibly a short one. I can't offer years of retirement happiness; I might live that long but that is just an outside chance and if I do it will be in a wheelchair with physical limitations. I can't take her dancing, or go for a hike, or ride a bicycle built for two. I can be fun, but only in a sitting position.

Sure, I can travel and I can still work for a while. But then that too will disappear. Only a very special woman could love my mind while seeing my body wither. It's a tough gig on both people.

The unfortunate outcome of this challenge is that I will likely spend the last years of my life without a woman by my side. For some men this is a good thing; not so much for me. I enjoy both the physical and emotional relationship that can only happen when you meet a life mate that matches you. I enjoy the company of a good woman, someone who can make me laugh and who will laugh at my bad jokes, someone who will be nice to me and whom I can be nice to. I miss that.

I get angry at this, angry that other people get to look for something with the belief that they have time, angry that other people get to have someone and can live in the dream and hope of a future together. It's frustrating.

When I left my wife, it was so I could rebuild a happier life. To be honest, even with ALS I am happier now than I was for many years in my marriage. I am enjoying what I have in life, taking pleasure in living the life I want to live. I love my life.

I just want a woman to share it with.

1 comment:

  1. You always have Ricky. Oh sweet consanguinity...