Hello! My name is Heidi Good Swiacki. I have been married to Steve for 25 years, which has been filled with laughter, trust and love. We have 2 great kids, Ashton 22 and Chris 16. I have ALS, aka Lou Gehrigs Disease. I was officially diagnosed March '05, I was just turning 45. This blog will be about a myriad of topics. I will share my ALS story which will hopefully encourage others. It will show that quality of life comes in many forms. I have to tell you up front that there will be some spiritual references. Don't be afraid or turned off by that. Since I have had ALS I have seen many miracles. Let's be realistic, who can be a happy, non-verbal,ventilated quadriplegic without Faith? I hope you will join me and make this an interesting, educational, inspirational forum. Humor and the ability to enjoy life is required! :)

Heidi passed away 3-25-13 :(

August 4, 2013

Hello, Steve here. To help with the healing process, I am going to continue on with Heidi's blog, primarily talking about our lives and how we as a family are learning to live on with Heidi's memories pushing us forward. Topics covered will be geared towards the affects ALS has on loved ones.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

A challenge of Faith

Work and the kids were handled, what about Steve? He had some pretty big challenges to face. In 2005 his best friend from childhood, Derek lost the battle with cancer. Then the news about me and the ALS ENOUGH, right? NO? Let's see what else he can take on. In December 2006 Steve's closest friend and brother went to sleep and never woke up. This was incredibly devastating to all of us. Walt was the fun uncle.  You could depend on him to make sure you never took yourself too seriously. A huge heart and adored Chris and Ashton. He was enormously proud of the kids.Walt and Steve were always there for eachother, through the good and the bad. Just as Steve assimilates one grief another hits. His mother had medical issues for years and Steve was the one to take care of her. Taking care of his mother was an added responsibility, especially when added to his already chaotic life. His mother passed in late 2008, leaving Steve to deal with her affairs

Walt and Chris

Steve and I became Christians a few years prior. It was a difficult road for Steve, to believe Jesus Christ was the Son of God and our salvation. His faith was young and fragile. So much death and broken dreams shattered what faith he did have. The time when he needed faith of some kind was when he turned away in anger.

It's said that God only gives what we can handle and the challenges break us down so through our weakness we can become closer to God. My faith tells me it's this way but it's very hard to explain to someone who is not inclined to lean on something that is  ethereal..

So what has kept Steve holding it together? Medication wasn't the answer. That just made him feel dull, like being bound in a blanket. He talked to a therapist a couple times and that was not a good combo. Steve didn't want to burden his friends with his troubles, he looks to them for normalcy.  He has his father's ear, +my friend who is a pastor talked  us through some rough patches,  and is comfortable talking with his boss when he needs to talk. These relationships and his friends on Facebook have kept him from imploding. A sincere thank you to everyone.

Walt Sr., Walt Jr., and Steve

He has made progress in the faith area. Steve no longer makes bible thumper jokes. I can    point out blessings we have received and miracles we have witnessed and he doesn't tune me out.  He understands that the ALS has strengthened my faith and I rely on my beliefs to get through the day. Faith is a private issue and I don't believe in forcing it on people. On the other hand, I believe that God loves everyone and He has a purpose for us all.  This, and the knowledge that there is a place in heaven waiting for me, gives me extreme peace. I want that for everyone, especially my family. So I pray for Steve to let go of his anger and accept God's plan. If he leans on God and lets Him carry the burden maybe Steve will experience the joy I do of just being alive and at peace.

Steve still has his dark moments but he is a loving father, husband caregiver.

I am blessed to have him.

Walt Jr. as a young Marine

Walt Jr. loving life

1 comment:

  1. Wow,....didn't realize Steve was going through so much. How much more can one person take? But, like you said, Heidi, God only gives you what He knows you can handle and He has a purpose for it. You and Steve are amazing. I can see how God has blessed you both through your illness. You are touching many people through your journey. Thank you for your incredible courage.
    Carrie L.