Inspiration comes from unlikely places. Mine, for the past five years, has come from my cousin Charles who in June of 2006 learned he had ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Gorgeous, funny, smart, kind, madly in love with his extraordinary wife Petra, and an ecstatic new father, he was also at the height of his career as The Dream Doctor. He was unlucky. He, however, never saw it that way. Relentlessly positive since birth, Charles approached the disease as an opportunity for exploration of the self and of the world from his new and rapidly altering perspective. His wife and elder daughter Celia joined him in this outlook and strategy. Aware of what he was facing, his choice of how to deal with it, how to be himself, was, for me, a wonder to behold, a source of inspiration as no other I have ever known. I will always be grateful to him for this, even if he perceived his gift as something entirely natural to the human spirit and therefore easy to give away.
From The New York Times: http://nyti.ms/lpmD8S
From The Los Angeles Times: http://t.co/LYVNQFp
Charles’ article about living with his disease in the Princeton Alumni Magazine: http://bit.ly/kpt7Pp
“What Makes me Smile”: Martha McPhee writing about Charles: http://bit.ly/11F9Fz
Africa (for Barak Obama), A New Song From Charles: http://bit.ly/jWgREO