Bloom where you are planted.
– Dabo Swinney

I heard those words back in November as I watched a news story about ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. The Clemson University football coach said his mother used to tell him that.  He said he’s watched a friend suffer from the condition. And since then, he’s tried to make the best of where he is in life and do whatever he could to “bloom where [he’s been] planted”  and promote awareness for ALS.

That moment was sandwiched in between the stories of two men with children speaking out about ALS, and Clemson University’s effort to raise money for the cause.

One man was a father whose 8-year-old daughter literally has to speak for him because he could no longer talk.  He appeared to be a healthy man in his mid-30’s, but the condition was slowly cutting off communication between his nerves and his muscles.

The other man, who was also dealing with the condition, was the father of the reporter who put that story together. He talked about how falls on the tennis court led to the diagnosis, and how its affected his father so much that he can’t walk or even brush his teeth on his own.

I’d never known anyone with ALS, but watching those stories and seeing the passion coming from those who had loved ones with the condition made me want to do something.  I wanted to bloom where I’d been planted.

I didn’t know what I could do until that reporter, a friend of mine, made a plea for help.

He was taking part in the annual Walk To Defeat ALS, and wanted others to support him and help raise money.

I wanted to give, but more than that I wanted to walk.

I wanted to walk to support a friend, to support other families affected by the condition, and to support ALS patients themselves.

And most of all…I wanted to walk because I knew I could.

I know I’ve complained millions of times about not wanting to go somewhere and walk for a long period of time.  But things tend to change when you consider that you could be someone who can’t walk at all.

So…the walk is less than a month away and our team has quite a ways to go to reach its goal, but with this plea for help…hopefully, we can make it.

(Click here for a link to my fundraising page or here to see the news story I mentioned)

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