There is a solution for every symptom, we must find a cure for the disease; in honor of Brian Rainwater and his courageous fight with ALS.
“There might not be a cure for the disease, but there is a solution for every symptom”, this was the response my Father always gave when faced with another progressive stage of ALS.
In the spring of 2008 my Father, at the young age of 49 years old was diagnosed with ALS – AKA, Lou Gehrig’s disease.
All my life I’d known my Father to be an energetic, engineer problem solver waking up every day with the sparkle of life in his eye. His solution to a common cold was always eat an orange, drink a cup of coffee, take two aspirin and go to work; his pace in life was focused and tenacious. I knew growing up that he always saw life through the lens of solutions- there was always a fix, never a problem that couldn’t be solved.
In 2008 when he was told he had ALS, you can imagine that his response to the way he saw the world quickly translated over to the way he saw his diagnosis.
ALS completely dismantles and destroys the mind’s ability to control the muscular system: and, in my experience, getting to know people that have been diagnosed with ALS is that the people that end up with this nasty disease are some of the most tenacious individuals I’ve ever met my life. This was no exception for my Father.
What I noticed most about the six plus years that my Dad lived with ALS was that he was completely untouched emotionally and spiritually by the nature of his physical condition. When it came to the need to modify his work so that he could continue providing for his family there was no question, he made a request for the equipment that he needed explaining the modifications necessary to now do his job with an eye gaze. Or the time he petitioned the local public transit to be able to have a wheelchair ramp in his vanpool so that he could continue his carpool commute instead of interrupting his routine to work. Never a question of submitting to being sick, instead, he always focused on finding the solution to his symptoms.
In the end his body naturally surrendered to the progression of ALS- he died on Father’s Day, 2014 after a joy-filled discussion about dogs and life decisions, the last thing I said to my dad was, “I love you, see you soon”.
I believe that everything happens for a reason, and the fact that the industry I have made my career home champions finding a cure for the very disease my Father died of, well, to me that is fate.
I cannot think of a more powerful group of solution-oriented people to take on this ambitious cause, than us.
Thank you, Augie Nieto, for your spirit and being a fighter, just like my Father did, you see the possibility of living with ALS and continuing the fight to provide hope for many. In our battle to find a cure for ALS, let’s take a page out of my Dad’s book and remember that there is always a solution if we choose to see life that way.
Augie’s Quest is working tirelessly to find a way to live with ALS, there is a solution and with the continued focus and funding I believe one day people will be able to take this disease head on and live with ALS. Thank you for helping us keep up the good fight, and thank you Daddy, for inspiring me to see the world in this way, the legacy of your perspective will live on in me for all my days.
Lindsey Rainwater is an experienced business advisor, executive coach and the founder of The Women in Fitness Association (WIFA).
WIFA is the global fitness association supporting women in their career trajectory helping them rise to their fullest potential in business and life.
She is known for her work advising businesses on their internal processes and systems, her original published content, additionally supporting individuals in transformational change and leadership development.
Lindsey is a widely published author, has been featured in many podcasts, books, facilitated keynote talks and workshops. In 2017, IHRSA (International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association) recognized her as a “Rising Star”.
Her intention is to help individuals and organizations enjoy necessary change in order to succeed.