When she was little, my daughter, Alexus, visited a 7-Eleven store with my wife, Jill. To reward Alexus’s wonderful report card, Jill said she could choose any treat. Our daughter said she wanted one of those scratch-off lottery tickets. Jill patiently tried to explain that no one ever really wins money playing those games, but strong-willed Alexus insisted.
As they walked to the car, Jill explained that if Alexus had bought something else then she would own something worth the money, and that the lottery often is a waste of money since it is so difficult to win. She explained about the odds of winning and showed Alexus the odds on the back of the ticket.
At the time, Jill had told me that she was more likely to have Huntington’s disease than win the lottery. Tragically, years later, we found out that both she and our daughter are gene positive.
But back to the story. When they got to the car, Alexus didn’t want to wait to furiously scratch the silver, flakey cover off the ticket, so Jill gave her a dime.
Yes, that’s right, she won. She won $2, which was double the ticket price. Jill, who never won, was amazed. So, she took Alexus and the ticket back into the store. She cashed it in, gave Alexus the money, and then, excited to have won, our daughter asked if she could buy a $2 ticket.
Ah, the innocence of children.
Jill said yes because she knew the ticket would be a loser, so Alexus would learn a valuable lesson. Gambling and wishing for a win is not something that always works.
That would have been a great lesson, had it worked. It didn’t.
Alexus won the second time. And then a third. She looked lovingly at my wife and asked if the lesson was over. Jill replied yes. Jill realized that not only had she failed to teach Alexus something, but that Alexus had taught her about a little something — hope.
Jill learned that we can believe in what seems like the impossible. She learned that sometimes odds are not deterrents but rather something to beat. That lesson still fuels her belief in a cure for Huntington’s disease.
The nearly impossible happens all the time. You just have to believe in it.
Note: Huntington’s Disease News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Huntington’s Disease News or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to Huntington’s disease.
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