Processing My Two Best Friends’ Engagements

Ryan Berhar avatar

by Ryan Berhar |

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Rare Disease Day

I’ve dedicated columns to my two best friends Darren and Sam before. They’ve been pillars in my life for as long as I can remember. While I’m a few years older than them, we more or less grew up together. However, they’ve now both reached the milestone of getting engaged to be married. Darren’s wedding is in two months, and Sam’s been engaged for about a week. Their reaching this point elicits a variety of emotions for me — particularly because I’ve yet to reach that point myself.

I am happy for them. Finding the love of your life is worth celebrating, which is why I bought Sam some kombucha the other day — excellent celebratory beverage, I guess.

Despite that happiness, I can’t help wondering if I’ll ever find a wife of my own. For years, my biggest fear was being alone for the rest of my life. Honestly, that probably still is my biggest fear, but it has subsided substantially. I’ve come a long way in this department. I’ve often explored the topic of contentment in my column. Still, I can’t help but feel a little behind right now. After all, they’re younger than me.

I used to think that my disability meant that women wanted nothing to do with me. Now that I’m a wealthy columnist, however, that has of course changed. (Kidding.) While my disability is no doubt a barrier to finding a wife, it’s by no means impossible. There are just delays because I don’t go out and meet people often. Meeting fellow SMA folks at the 2016 SMA Annual Conference opened my eyes. Many with SMA are in a relationship and some even have kids.

I’m tempted to lump this situation in with other instances in my life where SMA held me back. Watching my friends get driver’s licenses was the first time I felt left behind. Though, to be fair, I was “driving” long before any of them. Playing sports, working most jobs, or going away to college are some other notable instances. I continually remind myself that I’m perfectly capable of one day getting married just like Darren and Sam. It just might take a little longer. While SMA flat out robs me of many things, it only delays others.


Note: SMA News Today 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 SMA News Today, or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to spinal muscular atrophy.


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