ALS: A Love Story, by Andrea Lytle Peet

This is my ALS: A Love Story. It’s about my husband, David.

“Love is patient…”
Hmm. The poet of that popular wedding reading probably wasn’t envisioning a husband waiting at a porta-potty at Mile 14 during every one of his wife’s five marathons to help her in and out of her trike. But that’s what our love looks like.

“In sickness and in health…”
We couldn’t have imagined 8+ years ago that those lines of our wedding vows would one day rule every single decision we make. ALS has meant giving up on children and moving away from a city we loved. It ended my career and has shaped his.

“Til death do we part…”
Ah, yes. When I was diagnosed with ALS in May 2014, I worried that I would never have another purely joyful moment. Instead, happy memories are sweeter and laughter is easier to come by. We don’t wait to do the things we want in life now because we know that tomorrow isn’t guaranteed. It isn’t even expected.

Somehow, we managed to nail the reading at our own wedding, a poem by Lloyd Lee Wilson: “Slowly we learn that we are all broken, all less than perfect, and that God loves us, each one, wonderfully even so. Slowly we learn that the real love for one another we crave is not the ideal love of my personal façade for your façade, but the imperfect intent to love that my flawed self can offer the real you.”

Because that’s what our love looks like.