I'm thinking about posting... I really am!!! I always try to post on Thursday mornings and I pretty much blew through the day with a few ideas, but not an actual post! I've got quite a bit on my plate right now and some of it I just need to get off my lazy fanny and get done!
Last Wednesday, I got to speak to "Team Hope" - the monthly meeting for so many of the staff at Gift of Hope. I got to tell them all about riding the Donate Life Float at the Rose Parade!!! And I got to thank them for letting me be the one they sent... I did create a little chronology of posts about my journey, and I'm pretty sure I'm not finished yet - there are still to many people I want to tell you about. It was an experience I'll never, ever forget - mostly because of the people I met.
In just over three weeks, my team "Kari's Klimbers" will be hauling our fannies 94 floors up the stairwells in the John Hancock Center in the "Hustle up the Hancock". I have 100 people on my teams this year, and I'm so proud to have them with me... And I have a handful of Kari's friends and volleyball teammates coming along with me. Anyone who knows anything about me, knows how I feel about Kari. You might think you can imagine how it feels to be close to people who knew and loved her. You can't. It's more. And I have so many people who have stood by me and supported me through different parts of my life who climb with me too... And, I have our Melissa climbing with me too! She'll be climbing to honor her precious heart donor, Chloe... And Megan and John will be climbing to honor their lung donors... And I'll also be climbing to honor some of the chicks climbing with us, who help deliver these gifts to us, like Jennifer and Susan... You can read about my climb, and there are links to pledge me and any of my team members at www.ClimbingForKari.org
In another area of my life, Scott over at I am. Are you? wrote about the launch of a new transplant community network that seems like it will be pretty cool! You can connect to the Donate Life Illinois Organ & Tissue Donation Community... Check it out -- there are recipients, donor family members, living donors, organ donation and transplant professionals, and just people who want to promote the cause. Both Melissa and I have joined...
Finally, there is another site that is up and coming. The name of the site is "Heroes Ripple" - I think it's a cool name. It's still in the design stage and the person responsible for its creation is standing next to me in the picture to the left. Her name is Kim Morsching. I was forwarded a beautiful letter she wrote about riding the Donate Life Float - here is a paragraph from that letter:
I had read all of the stories on the DonateLifefloat.org website. I cried over every one of them. Their stories of loss, life and contribution are so empowering. These individuals can and are changing our world for the better. I was so humbled to be included amongst them. I wanted to meet each person and soak up their gifts. I have learned a new level of enthusiasm from Steve, community outreach from Jose and Theresa, fearlessness from Susan, gentleness from Mary, connecting with people from Sergio, facing and accepting life experiences from Randi, friendship from Ruth, Ron and Peter, inclusiveness from Lily, kindness from Jim and strength of family from Eric and Jenna. I can’t imagine what else I would have learned given more time to connect with the rest of the donor families and recipients.
I promised Kim that I will write about me and my hero, Kari, for her website. Kim lost her 21-year-old son, Kevin. Kevin became an organ donor. You can read about Kim and Kevin at the Donate Life Float website, or at her developing website.
You can read about her, but earlier this month, I got to hug Kim.