My family and I attended the July 4th Giants/Astros game at AT & T Park this past Saturday. It was a momentous occasion for several reasons: Emma’s first game, my first game on four wheels, and Fehmeen actually said that Tim Lincecum was a great pitcher (which was unexpected because she would rather stick needles in her eyes than pay attention to baseball). But the main reason we went to the game was to be a part of MLB’s celebration of the 70 year anniversary of Lou Gehrig’s farewell speech in 1939. For the record, the Giants organization did an excellent job at raising public awareness about ALS with a tasteful pre-game ceremony.
Later that evening as I was watching Baseball Tonight on ESPN, they took a break from the day’s highlights to turn the spotlight on Lou Gehrig and his two year fight with the disease that would one day bear his name. Apparently, Gehrig’s wife and doctor decided to keep his diagnosis a secret from him opting instead to allow him typewritten correspondence with the doctor discussing the chances of his getting better. They reasoned that the terminal nature of ALS would be way too demoralizing for him to handle.
Personally, I am glad that I have been afforded the courtesy of full disclosure of the disease that I am fighting. That simple knowledge has allowed me to properly prioritize the way I now live my life. I wonder if Lou would have done things differently had he known.