RIP Joost van der Westhuizen
Last week, I learned the news that South African rugby legend Joost van der Westhuizen had passed away after a lengthy battle with MND. I don’t like using the word battle as it implies you have a chance of winning, unfortunately I know this is not the case.
I’ve followed his story reasonably closely, more so since my own diagnosis. I remember when I first saw him and the effect the disease had already had on him, not really understanding the ins and outs of the illness.
His death hit my quite hard. Not from a personal aspect, but it made me think about my own mortality again. Here’s this superstar (of the rugby world at least), relatively wealthy, with a good network of friends and medical professionals and access to the best doctors available and still the disease won. What hope do I have? I take solace in the fact it took more than 6 years to finally take him.
He turned to religion after his diagnosis, it’s not something that has ever occurred to me in fact quite the opposite. I wonder if that will change as my condition worsens?
RIP Joost – You were an inspirational rugby player and your courage throughout your illness gives me hope.
I found this video while surfing – not seen it before. My favourite line…. “I want to be the first to survive MND”
And this video of when Jonah met Joost – really strikes a cord.