Lou Gehrig's Disease - Motor Neuron Disease - Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
Thought it had been cured by now? Still no known cause. Still no cure. Still quickly fatal. Still outrageous.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

How About Daughters Against ALS?

Advice columnist Carolyn Hax in the Washington Post

Advice columnist Carolyn Hax tells what made her mom special
12:00 AM CDT on Thursday, October 9, 2008
Carolyn Hax
Adapted from a recent online discussion.

Dear Readers: As many of you know, I lost my mom, Liz Hax, to ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease) in 2002. Every fall, I participate in the Walk to Defeat ALS to raise money and awareness to fight this horrific illness.

Dear Carolyn: What, in your opinion, made your mom so special? Many of us reading your column have unhealthy relationships with our parents but want to rise to the occasion for our own children. How did your mom do it? I have a little girl, and I want to do my best by her.

Dear Pittsburgh: That you care so much will go a long way toward making you an excellent parent, but you ask a great question.

Things I really liked about my mom:

She was there.

She listened to us, knew our friends and came to our games.

She hated self-important people, chitchat and phonies.

She was engaged with the world around her and didn't seem out of place in a library, at a concert or at a sporting event. She encouraged varied interests and enjoyed them with us.

She granted us freedom and only helped when asked (though holding back strained her very being).

She didn't withhold her flaws. She held grudges, she got crabby, she burned dinner, she said the wrong things.

She had four babies in five years and wrangled them into adulthood.

She taught the values of hard work and delayed gratification but also allowed moments of indulgence.

I miss her every day.

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