Last week was stressful, as the build up to Great Strides always is for me. The pressure of trying to make that fundraising goal, along with the preparations and the anticipation of friends and family coming together to find a cure for cystic fibrosis can become overwhelming.
There were numerous times when I felt the spark to write. Each time this spark occurred something would come up. This is one week when I don't beat myself up over not being diligent about writing. This is one week when the only thing that matters is Great Strides.
The walk was a great success. Our Valencia Great Strides had over 400 people in attendance and together we raised over $67,000 for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Team Jacob raised close to $7000 and our family surpassed our goal of $5000! The walk day is always emotional for the families. You are quickly reminded at how large your support group is and how many people care about your family and your child.
I always appreciate that my parents drive in from Tucson to join the team; they do this each year in support of Jacob and the family. This year was also special because Julie's parents joined us, having flown in from Ohio Saturday morning. The weather was nice, although a little hot towards the end. I'm always concerned about Jacob during the walk because I know that the reminders of the seriousness of his illness make him sad. They make me sad, too.
Great Strides is never a truly sad day for me. It's emotional, yes, and there were many moments when I was resisting tears (my friends Giles and Wardlaw will have a field day when they read this). But it's really a day of celebration, a day to recognize the CF community and all of the wonderful work being done to find a cure, and a day to make us appreciate that we aren't alone.
I know many CF kids and adults they can feel very alone, as they aren't supposed to have any human contact with each other. This is particularly true for Jacob. He doesn't think we understand how much it sucks to be a boy with CF. Someday he may develop a friendship with a CF person through Skype or video chat. I'm sure this would help him realize that he is not alone.
Of course, with Great Strides we realize that we're never alone. I feel blessed each year when the donations and letters of encouragement pour in.
I know I have to send personal "thank yous" to everyone who donated, but I hpe that you all realize how important you are to our family, and to me.
PS- If you still want to donate, there's still time: