I am always in awe of people with courage. I’m talking courage with a capital “C.” It’s the kind of courage that you can’t even know you have until you are faced with an impossible situation. I have no illusions about myself — I know I don’t have it! If you give me bad news, I’ll topple like a line of dominoes.
Not Aunt Cleo. She has Courage. She also has ALS, which you might know as “Lou Gehrig’s Disease.”
When she got the diagnosis, my husband’s aunt knew that it was a death sentence. She also knew that it wasn’t a “pretty” way to check out. She knew that she would suffer before her days on this earth were done. But, Aunt Cleo has that “firm foundation” I talked about earlier this week; she has the “3 F’s”: Faith, Family, and Friends. Maybe Cleo has “4 F’s,” because she is a Fighter.
The Universe played a cruel trick on Aunt Cleo: ALS robbed her of her ability to speak. From every story I have heard about her, Aunt Cleo could talk your arm right off in her day. I had never met her until last summer, and surrounded by writing pads, that gal scribbled away telling me stories of the family. She “talked” about the Tucker clan until I was plumb “tuckered out,” in more ways than one. And, she laughed the whole time.
You can read about Cleo at “What’s a Baseball Player Got to Do With It? Part One” and “What’s a Baseball Player Got to Do With It? Part Two.”
When I met her, Cleo could still walk and drive. These days, she’s confined to a wheelchair … but don’t think that stops her. Not on your life! Every day I get forwarded jokes from Aunt Cleo, but I have to send them to Sandee at Comedy Plus, because as hilarious as they are — they are too “raunchy” for me to share with you (if I ever want to work in public schools again).
Now hold it right there! I can hear every single one of you whining, “Shelly, why are you telling us sad stuff? Isn’t this supposed to be about ‘good’ things? You already talked about ‘Death‘ this week! Are you being ‘Debbie Downer’ on us?”
Nope. I’m talking about life, because Cleo is living it to the fullest. I’m talking about good. Cleo exemplifies the whole idea behind “Only The Good.” I have told you repeatedly that a good attitude can make all the difference in life. Cleo has a good attitude!
In fact, confined to a wheelchair, Aunt Cleo plans to “walk” for the cure for ALS on April 25th, with the help of her daughter, Kase! Aunt Cleo planned to raise $100, and has already raised $300. You could help me shock her socks off, if you have a couple of dollars to spare for a donation (I know that times are tough, but every dollar helps fight for a cure against this insidious disease). You can visit Aunt Cleo’s page at the walk website if you are interested.
Donate for the “Aunt Cleo” in your life.
None of the money that Cleo raises will help her own case of ALS. Cleo knows that. But, by God, she isn’t going to leave this earth without helping someone else.
Aunt Cleo is my hero … but I’ll gladly share her with you if you need a hero, too.
Are you wondering what I mean by “Only The Good ?” I’ve been writing Only The Good Friday every week for a few months now, and sporadically posting Only The Good before then. Here is what I have told you before:
For some people, Fridays are “good” because they are the end of the work week. For other people, Fridays are “good” because they are the Sabbath day. For me, Fridays are “good” just because I say so.
Friday is the one day out of a week where I refuse to be pessimistic; I refuse to write a post that is snarky; and I actively search for the “good.” I’ve discovered that if you practice looking for the good, it becomes much easier to find!
You can join me, and several of my friends, if you like (I’m trying to spread this “optimism virus” on the internet). Write a post about something good in your world, or tell us about your favorite charity. Tell us about a book or a song that gives you delight. You can even post a recipe you think we might enjoy (especially if it contains bacon!). If you do post, please link back to this page so your readers can join, and others can find you.
And, if you don’t want to post, then take just a minute to think … then post a comment to tell me something good going on with you today. Here’s hoping your day is filled with Only The Good.
Here are some of the folks joining me today:
- Jamie at Duward Discussion has a great link to a historical site. I think you’ll get a “kick” out of it.
- Kathy at Insightful Nana has an inspiring post.
- Thorne at Thorne’s World has her good going with something special for her feathered friends.
- Mo, at Inside Mo’s Mind has some springtime goodness to share.
- Karina has some good at Candid Karina — she gets a vacation!
- Sheila at Newbie Lifeline has an Only The Good laugh.
- You’re next