THE ODDS (Debbie Does ALS)


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It's come to this. My dear friend, Adam, who likes to have control over situations to the point where he tries to plan well in advance for everything, has begun a search.

Adam and I used to run together in the morning when I worked in Washington and, as the miles increased, so did our friendship grow. We talk about everything during our twice daily conversations and nothing is taboo. Making reference to the dismissive way in which my brother refers to my illness, Adam will ask me about my "condition." We counsel each other in matters both professional and personal, but mostly we just listen to each other.

As I said, he likes to plan. So, anticipating a time when I will not be there to listen, he has begun the search for my replacement. Please do not be shocked by this -- I think it is practical and hysterical and when I think about it I start to laugh. And it makes me wonder if maybe other people should start looking for a replacement for the role I fill in their lives. We have plenty of warning and I can even be part of the selection process.

Do not think badly of Adam. Our joking may be morbid and in very bad taste but I know he cares deeply for me and I know my "condition" is hard for him as it is for so many others. I know I am irreplaceable but we have to have fun with this goddamn thing, don't we?

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