I haven’t had time to update much…but today I thought I must make the time to do so.  Things have been going pretty well for the most part; nothing we haven’t dealt with before.  Summer is in full swing at our house; as is the kid’s energy.  We have been busy so far with our normal daily routines but as well as activities…as the kids didn’t want a break from them so we have continued dance and started gymnastics (and because I just love not one second to myself…we have an activity every single day and are always going or doing something.  When we are not on the go my kids act like it is terrible and they are picked on…so I count gym and dance as a blessings, it gives my ears a little rest from the whining and keeps the boredom at bay).

As far as fundraising goes…it is still going.  This past week we have recieved a handful of donations (from friends, family and a local wonderful company 7-2-11). We have been recipients of such great blessings and have been shown how our community, family and friends have this huge capacity of compassion…it really does overwhelm and amaze me.  We are inching closer to being placed with our ‘life-saving’ companion; who has us all beyond thrilled, excited and nervous.  We are nearly entering our 6th month in waiting for our D.A.D which was given as the ‘earliest’ we could be placed with a dog.  So from here on out is free game and we could potentially get a call that we have been matched with the perfect D.A.D (but we can’t rush perfection, and graciously wait as others are placed who need their D.A.D just as bad, if not more than we do).  Warren Retrievers has become like a second family to us, and a great life line of support.

Recently I was able to meet another family from WR family who lives about an hour or so away from us (a mother with a 3-year-old T1D).  I couldn’t imagine having a 3-year-old T1D…having a T1D is completely crazy to begin with but at least Kinz was 10 and at an age where I was able to reason with her, explain to her, and the perfect age where she wanted some responsibility of her T1D and doesn’t really fight it too much.  This family hasn’t met their ‘reserved’ amount and is waiting to become active on the waiting list for their diabetic alert dog; and after a lengthy conversation one night, my heart went out to this family.  I have been at the beginning of fundraising, I have been at the beginning of it all and walked in those shoes and knew I needed to reach out and help them.  So I offered for our last fundraiser to be combined and us (my family) doing all the work and once our account goal was met (which is sooooo close it hurts) the rest of our money earned on our online auction will go towards this family.  It may not be much, but it will be something.  How can I know and not do anything for them?  How can I get what they are feeling and ignore it?  I may be no one special but I think the world could change from all the ‘no one special’ people in this world doing small acts of kindness and keeping their capacity to empathize always open.  If I could I would help anyone and everyone waiting to get their child a diabetic alert dog…my heart just aches with sadness when we meet/hear about another T1D family because I know all too well the road they are walking; at the same time it is nice to be around people who get it and live it (and oddly enough I feel guilty some days being relieved when I am around those families I have been able to meet.  Perhaps the guilt comes in because I wish it were under different circumstances and wish our children didn’t have to fight so hard to live every day. ) I am afraid that is a piece of guilt I may carry for the rest of my life.

All this talk about Warren Retrievers and Guardian Angel Service Dogs brings me to this…I went to drop off a package to a dear friend who has been completely supportive through our journey to raise funds for our dog.  I went to high school with her and lost contact (to only recently see her again).  She has a great capacity to love, give, and empathizes…and I am one very lucky mother who has, once again, been surrounded by amazing examples of being a charitable person. As I was driving I decided to check the mail (I slack at checking the mail, I usually make the hubby do it).  As I sat in my car sorting through the mail I came across this envelope with writing that was familiar and a name on it that makes my heart happy.  It was from a great great (great?) okay, so I lose track of the greats…but one amazingly great-aunt.  In this envelope was a wonderful beautifully written letter;  A letter full of love and encouragement.  How did she know I have just been having ‘off’ days the past weeks and needed to hear some loving, encouraging, supportive words?  Instantly this letter had me in tears.  The love she has for us and the words she shared just hit me hard…once again, smothered in blessings. With this letter was another donation for our diabetic alert dog fund.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart, thank you for being you.  Thank you for making me want to be better. Thank you, not only for the donations, but the love you send us.  Words cannot describe what it means to me, what it means to us.

I have to say that sometimes (most of the time) it is hard for me to ask for help or even be on the receiving end of the spectrum.  It feels weird and it is certainly a hard pill to swallow.  Not that I am not grateful for it, but it is just a different feeling.  It has humbled me.  It has opened my eyes.  It has changed me beyond my own recognition.  Sad that things like having my children, becoming a nurse, my child being diagnosed with a chronic illness there is no cure for, and receiving and having to ask for help are all significant, large things…and it has taken things of that magnitude to change me.  I think it may be safe to say I am stubborn.

As we are setting up for our last *fingers crossed* fund-raiser for our diabetic alert dog I am reminded again about how blessed we are as a family and how we are in the perfect place surrounded by amazing people.  We planned to help people fundraise after we were done…later.  But it hit me one night like a ton of bricks that waiting wasn’t the answer; there are people just like us who need help too.  It’s obvious, I knew this all along…but it hit me that I couldn’t wait.  So our fundraiser will not only be to finish Kinzie’s account, but to help this wonderful 3-year-old who is beyond excited about getting herself a puppy!  What was once thought of being a small gathering of items has turned into this huge dream.  I am hoping we can accomplish our goal and make our online auction a complete success putting this family closer to paying for their wonderful life-saving dog as well.  People come across our paths at certain times, for certain reasons.  Preparing for this online auction has filled me with great hope.  Do I like asking for people to donate items? ABSOLUTELY not! I would rather eat a frog than beg for help…but here I am, and I am surviving and doing it and so far we have been supported once again and only met with love and compassion. I have gathered a handful of items already, crafting a few myself, and our auction date is set for July 16th!

Going through this again, setting up another fundraiser, has just brought this renewed sense of hope to me once again.  I love where I am at in my life, do not get me wrong…I love the clarity I feel but sometimes devoting my life to not only my children and family, but this disease, I can easily forget who I am.  It happens from time to time and I feel lost or like I am swimming in muddy water unable to see where I am going; but something happens and I find myself again but only to change and mold to fit the needs of our circumstances.  Hope.  I have a lot of hopes.

Hope can be defined as to have a confident desire.  I like that.  Sometimes I have to be reminded to remain hopeful…but when I do, it sends a surge of energy throughout me and renews my spirit.  It makes me want to fight for what I think is right, continue on and be stronger, and to continue to fight for my daughter.  I do have hope that one day she will be able to say “I once has type 1 diabetes”; If that isn’t possible than I hope for her to live a long, healthy life. I hope that my children are positively impacted from the selflessness and charity they witness and become far better, more loving, charitable, people than their father and I. I have hope that change can start by one-act of kindness.  I have hope that people walking the same path as we are and filled with joy on a daily basis and are able to hold on to hope as well. I have hope that ALL my children will live to be outstanding amazing people who make a difference in this world for the good.  I have hope that they may never have to see their children suffer and that a cure will be found before they would ever have to witness this disease taking over any other child.  I have hope that one day the ignorance surrounding type 1 diabetes will be non-existent…and I know that starts with educating continuously.  I have hope, because sometimes being hopeful is far better than the alternative.  Sometimes having hope makes all the difference in the world.


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