What Comes to Mind When You Hear the Word Joy? THIS.

Wilson Family
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Londyn, Wendy, and Michael

For many, Valentine’s Day brings to mind flowers, cards, and candlelit romantic dinners for two. In that spirit, today we wanted to share a heartwarming story about such a dinner and a special young lady who made it possible.

Wendy and Michael Wilson live in Oklahoma City with their 14-year-old daughter, Londyn, and two dogs, Luna and Sparky. Michael was diagnosed with ALS in 2017 at the age of 35. When she was just 10 years old, Londyn made sure her parents could celebrate their anniversary in style. Wendy tells us how:

By Wendy Wilson
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Wendy, Londyn and Michael in 2017

Londyn is just amazing. She was only 7 years old when this journey started and has been incredible with her understanding and ability to roll with the situation. She is always willing to lend a hand, whether it’s helping Michael scratch his face or eat a snack. It hasn’t been without a few heartbreaking moments like missing out on a bedtime story because I was busy giving Michael his Radicava infusion, but we try to be mindful of these moments and give Londyn the space to express her frustrations, which are few and far between.

One moment that showcases Londyn’s thoughtfulness was when she planned and prepared an anniversary dinner for Michael and me during the beginning of the pandemic. The story was posted on Facebook and picked up by a local news station.

Here’s my post:

“Last night we were asked for the first word that came to mind when we heard the word ‘joy.’ Tonight I have my answer: THIS. This husband who amazes me every day. This daughter who I get to watch grow and develop into a wonderful human being. This life.”

Today is Michael’s and my anniversary. Twelve years married, 15 years together. Now, we’ve never really made a big fuss about our anniversary. Usually just go out for dinner. Sometimes Londyn goes with us, sometimes she stays with a sitter if someone really twists our arm with an offer. When Londyn realized that today was our anniversary and we couldn’t go out to eat (hold the COVID, please) she went above and beyond to create a romantic anniversary dinner. Not because we said anything about missing out or that we wished we could do anything other than stay at home, but because she just wanted us to have a great anniversary, even while isolated from the world. She pulled out all the stops.

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2020 Quarantine Anniversary

When I got home from work, she told Michael and I to go into our bedroom and change into the outfits she had picked out for us. We were to knock on the door when we were ready. When we knocked on the door, it opened to dimmed lights, classical music, and a trail of hearts and stars leading to a fancy set table by a delicately dancing fireplace. The table was complete with a tablecloth, flowers in a vase, drinking glasses, utensils rolled in napkins, and “laminated” menus.

We each got to pick what we would like her to make us for dinner and got to finish up with dessert. She made it all about us. Her mom and dad. She really made me feel special. (She didn’t even sit with us, which felt weird because she sat by herself at the dining room table, but I get it.)

This.

Special thanks to Wendy, Michael and Londyn for allowing us to share their personal journey with the ALS community. To learn more about how you can help and get involved in the fight against ALS, visit our website HERE.

To continue to follow stories about people living with ALS in the community and learn more about the disease, subscribe to our blog or follow us HERE.

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