Sunday, July 21, 2013

Celebrating Five!

It is hard to believe Mia's Marchers celebrated it's fifth year! It's not, however, hard to believe how amazing our team of family and friends is.

Five years ago, I had no idea how much to set our fundraising goal for. I think I may have set it for a couple hundred dollars. That year, 24 members raised $2,000. Each year we grew in numbers and contributions. So this year I set the goal the highest it's been, $10,000! Two weeks prior to the walk, we needed quite a bit to meet that goal. Of  course, we, not only met the goal, but got all the way to $12,000! I am proud to say that in 5 years, Mia's Marchers has raised over $32,000!!!!!

In starting Mia's Marchers, our goal was to "pay it forward" in whatever way we could. Whether you are a parent, grandparent or still just a kid, chances are you know a child who has benefited from Golisano Children's Hospital. Some children know the hospital too well, others for just a brief time. Dave and I have said it many times, all hospitals have their pros and cons but we are so fortunate to have a children's hospital close to us. It allows us to manage Mia's care with ease and with a great medical team. Mia considers Sandy Strong one of her friends! 

Now, with the help of the community and many others, they are building a bigger, better Golisano Hospital!!! So, we are paying it forward and we are so blessed to have the support to do that.
We want to thank our team from the bottom of our hearts. We hope you are proud of your contributions that are helping kids every day! We are.

Take a look at our team!
Mia's biggest supporters!

Our St. Joe's Family

Great neighbors!

Friends from St. Joe's run 5K again!!

 Waiting for the Stroll


 Showing our team spirit

Friends get a chance to talk

 One of our littlest supporters!

Wearing it with pride!

 Inseparable twins!

Thank goodness for our fashion consultant, Holly!
Even our best sitter runs with us!

Chillin' with Grammy

Samantha and Dave ran their first 5K!!! So proud of them!
We LOVE Sandy!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

In honor

By virtue of similar paths, we have had the privilege of meeting an outstanding family. A family that smiles amid all the adversities they face. A family whose strength inspires me beyond words. An 11 year old boy who has had more surgeries than his age and continues to face more. Yet, somehow, this amazing boy manages to conduct himself like any other boy his age. Another boy, a teenager, with his own challenges, who handles them with such grace that one would never know his daily obstacles. A toddler whose smile warms your heart. A father and mother who fight for their children and love them unconditionally. A mother and father who have more on their plates than any one family should have. It just doesn't seem fair! Still, meeting them, you'd never know.

About 2 weeks ago, my kids and I went to the hospital to visit the 11 year old boy who had been at Strong for almost 3 weeks! Having just had surgery, he played air hockey and foosball with gusto, not letting his IV or aches and pains stand in his way. The kids had a great time together! I never heard him complain once. Not about missing the first half of his summer, not about how sore I know he must be, not about the hospital food or about any other of the million things that he could have! His mother, looked as beautiful as ever and wore a smile that I know is difficult when your child has been suffering and you have been juggling home and hospital for 3 weeks!

Why do I share this with you? I share this in hopes to honor this family. I share this so you can understand how Dave and I keep things in perspective. So many children and their families we have met, each with a different story and yet all on the same path of  watching their child go through countless doctor appointments, procedures, surgeries and treatments. I share because this boy and his family deserve a moment of praise! I share because if they can smile, so can a lot of other people!!!!

Last week Mia had to go under anesthesia for an MRI. Most hospital days, I put on my yoga pants, comfy shirt (often my "Mia's Marchers" shirt) and put minimal make up on, if any. Not last week. I thought of this family. I got up, put on a nice outfit (well, not yoga pants at least), did my make up and wore jewelry. If that mother can do it, so can I! I thought of her much of that day, not out of pity but admiration! I thought of all of them and all they are going through and I smiled.....because they smile!