Well, it happened: as much as I was hoping that my lack of social media presence these days would make everyone forget all about me during these days of the viral “Ice Bucket Challenge”, it was not to be. One of my very best friends, who I love dearly, took the challenge, and then nominated me.
I absolutely hate being cold. I am the world’s worst Canadian that way. I never jump straight into the lake; I’m the one gingerly taking one step at a time, on my toes, letting 1/2″ of water touch me at a time until I become used to the temperature. While getting a bucket of ice water dumped on me may only last a few seconds, I just can’t bear the thought of it.
If I don’t do it, people will think I don’t care about ALS? I mean, the original idea was that you dumped the bucket of ice water on you if you DIDN’T donate, but now everyone is just dumping the water, and in most cases, who knows if they’re actually donating. Yeah, I know, awareness… blah blah blah. But if I was to say, “I donated, so now I don’t have to do it” do I just look like a spoil sport? I saw a post yesterday on Yummy Mummy Club where the writer said many of the same things that I’ve thought, and then I saw her get absolutely crucified in the comments, both on the site and especially on the FB post. I’ve rarely seen Erica (founder/owner of the website) step in to tell off a commenter, but she justifiably had to yesterday.
But most importantly to me, I’m trying to teach my kids an important lesson. When they heard I’d been challenged, they were absolutely giddy (awful little children LOL), so they were understandably disappointed when I said I wasn’t going to do it. My 13-year-old said to me, “But even my friends are doing it!”
And that was where, if I hadn’t already felt firm in my decision, I did at that moment. I said to her, “If your friends were doing challenges involving drugs or drinking, and they ‘nominated’ you, would you do it?” She looked at me as if I had two heads. “Ice and drugs aren’t exactly the same thing,” was the gist of the comments from my family. True, of course, but the idea is the same: my friend – who again, I love and respect – challenged me to do something that I’m not comfortable with. If I do it anyway, even though I don’t want to, just because of public pressure, what am I teaching my kids?
So yes, I will make a donation – maybe to ALS, maybe to another charity of my choosing – but I won’t be dumping ice on my head. Call me a stick in the mud. Say I’m no fun. Tell me I’m heartless, and don’t care about people’s suffering. I know what’s in my heart. Anything else doesn’t matter.
PS – That’s not to say that if my husband decides to participate that I won’t point and laugh – I do still have a sense of humour!