Thanks to my mom, Lisa Rustemeyer, for nominating me for the #IceBucketChallenge! I’ve seen a lot of people posting their videos and donations recently, and I’ve been hoping for a nomination ever since. Most of you probably don’t know this, but I lost my grandfather to ALS many years ago. I was very young when he passed, so I never really had a relationship with him. The few memories I do have of him are images of him hooked-up to the hospital machinery that was keeping him alive, and him apologizing for us having to see him like this. From what I’ve learned about him from my family, I lost out on knowing a very special man. This is for you gramps ♥
I’ve seen a lot of people posting recently about this challenge, some who have participated and some who have not. It seems many people are unclear about what ALS is, some are wondering what dumping a bucket of ice on your head has to do with the disease, and a few are condemning the trend as just another bout of lazy Facebook activism.
For any of you who don’t know, ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease) is a neurodegenerative disease that impacts motor neurons in the brain and spinal cord leading to a slow and painful loss of all muscle function. Those affected lose all voluntary and involuntary muscle control, which causes paralysis, loss of cognitive function, and finally death. There is currently no treatment or cure.
To answer those who don’t understand what dumping ice on your head has to do with ALS, it doesn’t really have any direct relation. It’s simply a way to raise awareness. What can awareness do, you ask? Well, a lot. Since July 29th, ALS Foundation have taken in over $2.3 million in donations, as opposed to the $25,000 they received in the same time span last year. And yes, this is probably just another example of Facebook activism, and you might think it’s lazy. However, even though all you see on your newsfeed is a bunch of your friends dumping ice on their heads, the fundraising impact has been huge. It has made a difference and we shouldn’t try to diminish that.
So today, I’m going to participate in both parts of the challenge by making a donation to The ALS Association in memory of my grandfather, and by getting an ice cold shower. I encourage all of you, not just the people I would like to nominate, Abby Wylan , Rachel Elizabeth, and Everett Moser) to do the same.
Learn more, sign up for The Walk to Defeat ALS, and donate at: