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July 31, 2008

Bad News

Zacky and I are sharing a snuggly moment. He's nuzzling against my neck, and I'm kissing his hair.

"I just love you so much!" I blurt out.

"Okay, Mom," Zacky replies. "But just so you know...I'm a Cubs fan!"
11:14 pm cdt          Comments

July 20, 2008

Missed Opportunity

When I sneeze, I cannot hold my head up.

I’ve tried. Oh, how I’ve tried!

But when I sneeze my head is thrown forward and down, my chin almost bouncing off my chest, as my neck collapses. No matter how hard I try to resist or brace myself, it is inevitable. I snap back upright a split-second later, but sometimes the damage is already done.

I have sneezed while walking across a room; I fell down.

I have sneezed while I was brushing my teeth; I gave myself a minor black eye on the faucet of the bathroom sink.

I have sneezed while eating a meal; I knocked over my drink.

But this time…

Well, this time tops them all.

When we’re swimming (you see where this is going, don’t you?), I am always very careful to keep my face out of the water because I cannot stop myself from breathing in when water hits my nose. I love the buoyancy of the water, love feeling almost weightless, but I have no desire to snort a big lungful of chlorine and…(ahem)...well, worse. So, I back-float, I bounce around, I play catch and throw diving sticks for the kids, but I never, NEVER go under intentionally.


So yesterday I’m standing with Jim in four-foot-deep water, cheering Zacky as he swims back and forth between us.

And all of sudden I feel a sneeze coming on.

I glance wildly for something to grab onto, but I’m surrounded by water. I catch a quick glimpse of Emily surfacing nearby, and I seize her shoulder with my left hand to brace myself so I won’t go under.

Before I can take any other evasive actions, it is upon me. I sneeze.

I instantaneously throw my head forward and down.


A perfect face-plant on the surface of the water, drenching my face and bangs, filling my nose and mouth.

And, just as fast, I raise my head, letting the water stream down my face before opening my eyes.

Jim is laughing. Jim is really laughing. Jim is laughing a deep, full-bellied laugh—one that’s usually reserved for Zacky when he has done something exceptionally cute.

I blink and wipe water away a few times. Yep, Jim is still laughing.

In fact, forget Zacky. I cannot recall seeing Jim laugh anywhere close to this hard since we were at the Cubs game when Aramis Ramirez took a pop-up off his forehead. And even that isn't close.

Meanwhile, my nose is burning and I'm coughing and sputtering.Thankfully, it happened so quickly, I didn't actually take in too much water.

Now that I've had a few seconds to recover I find I’m laughing almost as hard as Jim is. I'm having a hard time breathing, not because of the face-full of water, but because I can see it all in my mind's eye, and this must be one of the funniest ALS side-effects I have ever experienced. But even though I'm okay and I'm laughing now, I am a little mad, too.

Mad at Jim for laughing at my misfortune? Mad that he would laugh at my ALS-induced water ballet? Mad that instead of rescuing me, my Superman is ridiculing me?

No way! 

Jim could see immediately that I was in no danger, which is why he is able to laugh. My heroic husband would save me in a heartbeat, if I actually needed saving. And he's not ridiculing his disabled wife, not when we laugh together at the many, many crazy situations that ALS has introduced into our lives. 

No, I'm just chagrined that no one got this on video. That eight seconds on tape could have paid for this vacation plus several more! We have seen the videos of a little kid riding a tricycle off the edge of a deck and a dog jumping on a trampoline, and Jim assures me they would be poor second-place finishers to my ill-timed sneeze.


We'll be at the pool Friday. I can't promise anything, but, just in case, charge up your video camera!

4:18 pm cdt          Comments

July 12, 2008

A Very Important Rule

12. Always double-check to see whether a public restroom has an auto-flush toilet. When you are concentrating on making your clumsy fingers button your jeans, the sudden, loud and unexpected "Whoosh!" from behind you--combined with your overactive startle reflex--is enough to make you fall down...or worse: fall in!
8:52 am cdt          Comments

July 8, 2008

"If you can jump...

...up and down in the pool, that means you don't have ALS!" Zacky beamed, as I showed him how I can be almost normal in a swimming pool.
4:02 pm cdt          Comments

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Welcome to Aimee's Blah, Blah, Blog...
With great trepidation, we introduce the latest feature on a blog.

We acknowledge the pathetically long gaps between new entries to the website, and we appreciate the gentle prodding from visitors who would like to see more frequent updates about what's keeping us busy. 

So, in an attempt to dispel the notion that Aimee lounges at home all day in her World Series Champions gear (okay, that part is true) with her feet up (never!), eating bon-bons (often) and catching up on the latest trade rumors and spring-training reportswhile Jim is out saving the world in his S-emblazoned red cape, of course—we are experimenting with a blog to provide (weekly? biweekly? monthly?) updates on our activities.

However, come Opening Day, we're not promising anything...

[Note: Aimee is the author of the blog. All first-person accounts are hers unless otherwise noted. Any pro-Cubs entries are obviously the unauthorized work of Jim and should be reported to the proper authorities immediately.]