June 18 - Bill Isbister

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On day 18 of ALS Awareness Month, we are featuring Bill Isbister.

I first started to notice some muscle loss about 3 years prior to being diagnosed and I knew something wasn’t quite right, later I was diagnosed with ALS on July 24th 2018.

I grew up with 6 brothers in my family and no sisters. I was building cars at a very young age before becoming an Auto-body Mechanic for 42 years.  I often think how I laid every brick and rock in our yard at our family home, how I built the greenhouse out of old collected windows and doors. Everything I did I used my hands so I miss my hands, along with my arms, I can’t hug or clap my hands anymore, it’s the little things.

I enjoy the coffee groups we attend and I am grateful for all they provide, we have learned a lot about things we never knew we needed. This is a very merciless disease that affects any race, occupation, age, religion, rich or poor. Our strong faith sustains us through the changes and loss of dexterity. We are all affected very differently but everyone is affected. I hope sharing my story is a voice to help others, to raise awareness; as well it brings a measure of comfort to express my emotions.

We are grateful for the love, friendship and support of our family and those we continue to meet. We would like to thank Mikael Backlund from the Calgary Flames for providing the opportunity for me and my family to attend the hockey game Calgary vs Edmonton. It was a wonderful experience.