This weekend was the Walk for Wishes to raise money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Our family has participated in this event every year but one. It was just too much to handle the summer after Maddie died so we sat that one out. Now the walk has become sort of therapeutic for me. It allows me to remember one of the best times that we ever had as a family with Maddie and tell our story to others. I miss her so much! The walk allows me to do something good for others in her memory. This year I set a goal to raise $5,000 as a team. That amount seemed crazy when I started but it gave me something to work toward. I spent the last 4 months bombarding my friends Facebook feeds with messages about Make-A-Wish. I basically became a beggar, and for that I apologize. I turned my friends and family into beggars, again I apologize. I went for months with little to no donations happening but a few weeks ago something amazing happened. Donations started to pour in. People I haven't spoken to outside of Facebook in years made donations. I even had donations from strangers and friends of friends. My team received donations from a friends I went to middle school with in another state. There were donations from a fellow cheerleader from high school, a coworker from a job I had in high school, college friends, family, and even Maddie's former teacher. I was overwhelmed at the generosity of people. We had people sign up to walk with us from Indiana and Ohio. One of our team members got her husband and two girls up extra early on a Saturday, drove an hour and fifteen minutes to Louisville, and was there to walk with us at 9:00AM. Did I mention that I'd never met her before? She used to work with Fred and was so inspired by Maddie that she felt like she had to help us. My best friend brought her family three hours south from Dayton, OH so that she could walk with us. My friends and family showed up in full force. My mom's cousin Troy even showed up out of the blue to support Team Madison Hope. My friends and family got up early, brought their kids out, and walked in the hot sun and I am inspired.
We weren't the biggest team there but we did raise 3rd highest dollar amount. We weren't a corporate sponsored team like the other two top fundraisers. We were an angel inspired team. Inspired by one amazing little girl that never spoke a word during her time on Earth but changed lives and hearts wherever she went. We raised over $5,000! We did it! You did it! I am humbled, honored and inspired by all the support we had. I honestly can't put into words how exactly I feel so I won't try. I'll simply end this blog post with a big THANK YOU even though that doesn't seem adequate enough.