I have seen the ice bucket challenge all over my Facebook feed over the last week or so. I thought nothing of it at first except that it was funny. Then I started to see articles about how terrible it was to waste a natural resource just to avoid making a donation to a charity. But in the same article, it showed that donations for ALS are skyrocketing over previous years, so could it really be all bad? Then I saw people who were doing the ice bucket challenge and saying on camera that they were donating too.  My first thought was “that is prideful to announce that you’re donating!”, but at least it seemed to make more sense than doing it to avoid giving.

Then last night I was stopped in my tracks.  I remembered clearly the day I got the call. I was standing in my dining room and my dad told me that he was diagnosed with ALS.  The time that followed that call was terrifying. I searched the internet and saw how ALS ravages the body in as little as two years and I was petrified. My dad did die less than two years later, but it was Pulmonary Fibrosis that left it’s mark, and now my life is forever changed. So this ice bucket challenge took on a new meaning for me. I could see the benefits of raising awareness for a devastating disease. I am not the same because of a disease that took my dad’s life. And so many others are touched by ALS, the disease they thought my dad had.

So while nobody is calling me out, I’m calling myself out. I am doing the ice bucket challenge to raise awareness and funds for a disease that is terrifying and has no cure, ALS. But I am also splitting my donation with the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation in honor of my dad. Sadly, I’ve never donated to a cause like this and I honestly think it just never occurred to me. So I’m hoping that my ice bucket challenge will make you think about a disease/disorder that has touched your life and take the time to raise awareness AND GIVE! I vote to change the ice bucket challenge and call yourself out! Take the plunge and then donate something… $5, $50, $500, whatever is in your budget. And make people think a little. I’m really glad that my Facebook feed made me stop. And remember. And give.

Donate to ALS here

Donate to the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation here

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