Better Days: An ALS Documentary

Posted on February 24, 2015 by

Do you remember the Ice Bucket Challenge?

Last summer, millions and millions of people jumped at the chance to dump ice chests, buckets and barrels of ice cold water on themselves, and then challenge their friends to do the same. Social media was saturated with photos, videos and testimonials.

Do you remember why?

The Ice Bucket Challenge was created to raise awareness about ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. In several months, over $8 million dollars was raised to fight this horrible, terminal disease that has no treatment or cure. In other words, ALS is a death sentence – and along the way, the sufferer’s  body will slowly lose all ability to move.

I have a friend who has ALS; actually, I met her through my son. Her name is Cathy Speck, and over the last two years she has taught both of us about life and love while she is dying. You might remember her from the story I wrote last fall about the ALS walk we did together, or the Christmas caroling party she organized.

ALS walk

Everyone loves her-can’t you tell?

She really is an amazing woman – and I want her to stay alive. Watch this video clip and you’ll see why:

Nadine El Khoury created this video short about Cathy – and she is also the director of  ‘Better Days’, a documentary she has written, filmed, directed and is producing to share awareness about ALS.  Through a strange twist of fate, she found Cathy’s song, “Sweet Beyond”, online, not knowing Cathy suffered from ALS, too. Cathy and Nadine became fast friends, and a few weeks ago, my son and I attended a fundraising event to support Cathy and help raise awareness for the documentary project. There was no ice bucket, and we weren’t asked to do anything except listen to stories and watch a video trailer for a documentary trying to get finished.

I spent two hours shifting between tears of laughter, sadness and hope, but I left feeling full of love.

You can watch a trailer of the video here.

Nadine’s documentary has captured the essence of ALS: how it strikes at random, often swiftly and without warning, and leaves its victims living a life they never imagined.

You may not know anyone with ALS. You may not want to know about this disease, or how devastating it is. You may not want to think about things that are so frightening or painful or things that could actually happen to you. But if you’ve taken the time to read this post and watch these videos, you know Cathy. And I promise you – you would love her, too.

So I have a favor to ask you.

Did you do the Ice Bucket Challenge? I promise you, my request is much, much easier.

We need your help. In our little town, at our little fundraiser, we gave over $4,400 towards helping get this documentary finished. This movie isn’t for profit- this is a project created by one young woman from Lebanon who had a friend develop ALS who is using her talents to spread the word about a disease. This is from one dying woman who lost her mother, two brothers and an aunt to ALS, and is living more gracefully than many. This is from one mother who has watched her teenage son befriend a woman who is dying, and has seen him enrich his life from knowing her.

This is from one writer asking you to be grateful for your health, and to share what you can to get this film finished. To find a cure for this disease.

To help Cathy live.

To donate, use the “Go Fund Me” buttons on the documentary website,

To learn more about the “Better Days” documentary project, visit Nadine’s Facebook page:

To watch another trailer for “Better Days”, click here:

And please share this post on your social media. Tweet, Facebook, and Google+ this to help us spread awareness about ALS, about “Better Days”, and about Cathy.

She’s really something special.


Jennifer Wolfe

Jennifer Wolfe, a writer-teacher-mom, is dedicated to finding the extraordinary in the ordinary moments of life by thinking deeply, loving fiercely, and teaching audaciously. Jennifer is a Google Certified Educator, Hyperdoc fanatic, and a voracious reader. Read her stories on her blog, mamawolfe, and grab free copies of her teaching and parenting resources.

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Comments: 4

  • Andrew Parker

    June 12, 2015

    My names are Andrew Parker… ALS has been ongoing in my family for long..I lost both parents to
    ALS and it is so much pain have not been able to get over. As we all know medically,there is
    no solution or cure for ALS and the cost for Medication is very expensive..Someone introduced me
    to a Herbal man email:( Medical Practitioner)in oxford.. I showed
    the man all my Tests and Results and i told him have already diagnosed with ALS and have spent thousands of dollars
    on medication..I said i will like to try him cos someone introduced me to him..He asked me
    sorts of questions and i answered him correctly..To cut the story short,He gave me some medicinal
    soaps and some herbs(have forgot the name he called them) and he thought me how am gonna use them
    all..At first i was skeptical but i just gave it a try..I was on his Medication for 2 weeks and i used all the soaps and herbs according to his prescription.. that he will finish the rest
    himself..and i called him 3 days after, i arrived and i told him what is the next thing..he said,he has
    been expecting my call.. he told me to visit my doctor for another test..Honestly speaking,i never
    believe all he was saying until after the test when my doctor mention the statement that am, also negative
    and the doctor started asking me how do i get cure….Am telling this story to every one of you encase
    you also having same problem you can contact him on his via
    email address: .

    Kind Regards!


  • Cristy Mishkula

    February 25, 2015

    It’s such a sweet thing for you to help spread awareness.

    • Jennifer Wolfe

      February 25, 2015

      Thanks, Cristy. ALS is a devastating disease, and whatever I can do to help I am more than willing to do.

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