A Fond Farewell From A Father "Locked In" With ALS
Yesterday at 1:30 PM Andy Eddowes gave up his long struggle with ALS/Lou Gehrig's Disease and quietly passed away.
Today I want to share with you the song Andy created with me for his 12-year-old daughter, despite the fact that he was unable to speak or move, because of his disease.
Today, just as his loving song to his daughter predicted, Andy is, I believe, "sailing free"--no longer locked in, but, rather, back to his beloved activity of sailing, right alongside those he loves.
I was lucky enough to get to perform the song "Bright Eyes" live in Washington DC in 2008, before the largest-ever gathering of ALS patients and their families, thanks to Andy and his inspirational words. May his words fly freely today too, and maybe reach to that tender place within your own heart that is ready and willing to be touched by the feeling of love, and life.
I think each of us, in our own ways, finds ourselves "locked in" from time to time. Maybe Andy's words, and his courageous way of going forward, despite unimaginable setbacks and obstacles, can remind each of us today about how precious life is, and how WORTHY we all are of daring to speak our hearts and learn to SAIL forward into all the astonishing places that doing so can take us.
When Andy and I started work on this song, I somehow imagined he would want a song explaining his illness to his still-young daughter. But, it turned out, what he wanted was a song that explained his health. We are all of us, despite the circumstances, deeply healthy, when we let ourselves know that we are. Andy taught me that. That, and a thousand other things about what it means to face life ready to receive all of its gifts, no matter what.
Good bye, Andy. You left a meaningful mark here, and you will be missed.
Today I send your song out to the whole wide world, trusting that it, too, will sail!
Please consider sharing this song with someone who you believe it will speak to, in honor of Andy and the life he lived.