Friday, 29 November 2013

Thank You

This is blog entry number 366. I have a full year of blog entries behind me and have missed only one day, New Year's Eve of 2012. When I started this blog I did not know how impactful it would be, to me and to many others. My intent at first writing was simply to share my life with those around me, to give my family and friends a window through which they could view this process, this march down the pathway of ALS.

My first entry was short, simply an introduction to what was happening to me. When I wrote that first entry on November 28, 2012, I thought it was a simple statement about me having ALS. As I read it now, with a year behind me of struggle and change, I realize that it was in fact a fist of challenge thrown up in the air, a revolutionary salute, defiance flung in the face of destiny. What I did not know then, but know for certain now, was that the first entry in my blog would be my manifesto, my statement of intent.

That statement is truer today than it was 365 days ago. On that first day, I wrote "My simple choice now is what I do with the rest of my life, just like everyone else. My choice is to live with ALS, not to die from it. Of course I will die from something, but today I choose to live." Each day from that moment I have chosen to renew that vow, to raise my fist once again and demand life from the face of death. Each day I have made the personal commitment to move forward and to keep going.

Since that day there have been nearly 60,000 unique page views. There are hundreds of people each day who take the time to share this voyage of discovery with me, so see these new lands and far horizons through that window, filtered by the lens of these words. The bulk of my guests come from Canada and the USA, yet many come from elsewhere. These virtual visitors arrive on my literary doorstep from all across the world, places as diverse as China and Europe, Central Africa and South America, Australia and India.

There have been comments by the hundreds, and not just from my Mom. People have reached out and shared their stories with me by email and on Facebook, followed me on Twitter, shared their lives with me in person and through the ether. To read these statistics, each representing a search for something, a reason for knowing, is to discover that, despite my greatest fears, I will not die alone. I know you are out there. Thank you.

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