Hello Family and Friends,
Raise your hand if 2020 was the weirdest year of your life! I am guessing everyone reading this raised their hand.
Let me start off by saying that I hope you have stayed healthy, safe, and sane during this tough past year. I know it hasn’t been easy for any of us, yet let’s continue to look toward the future and hope life gets back to normal sooner than later. Despite this past year having been so weird, I have been pretty darn healthy, and my life has been filled with excitement and adventure.
As I mentioned in last year’s letter, we added two new members to the Lerew Family: my mini mule, Luna and my donkey, Lily! Dominique is a third equine who keeps them company on the neighboring property. They have been such wonderful companions to me during this pandemic, and I am so thankful to have them in my life. I was able to nurse Lily back to health after years of neglect and suffering. Her hooves are looking excellent, her skin healed up some, and she’s gained a ton of weight. She was gaining so much weight I had our veterinarian check her out (on August 4th) and that’s when I learned my Lily was PREGNANT!
What a most amazing and wonderful shock and the best early birthday present I could have received! So, what does a mother to a donkey do when she finds out her baby is expecting a baby you may ask? I made her a blue and pink tutu, bought her a flower crown, and did a maternity photoshoot of course! Donkeys stay pregnant for a whole year (poor things) and even though we didn’t know when the foal was conceived, my vet suspected she was in her third trimester! We had even more fun by trying to guess if it would be a boy or a girl (Jack or Jenny), when Lily would give birth, and what color the baby would be? So many exciting things to think about! All those questions were answered when I woke up on October 22nd and found an extra four-legged animal in my field. There HE was, in all his glory…Lupin Lerew. I was ecstatic and I don’t think my voice had ever gone so high the moment I saw him face to face for the first time. He was a BIG little guy, which I know sounds confusing. He came out of his mama BIG, and his color was gray with cute striped legs that made him look kind of like a zebra. I was instantly smitten by his PRECIOUSNESS! Since then, Lupin has been the greatest joy in my life. He is a mama’s boy (donkey & human mama), he has the cutest personality, and he is really fluffy!
Another exciting thing that happened in 2020 was the beginning of my house being built! I have my very own 1,000 sq ft house being built onto the back of my parent’s home separated by a common breezeway (so my kitties can move between the two) and to give my parents a little breathing room from me! It has gone up so fast and it will be completed by the summer!
The biggest thing to happen in 2020 was something so special that I can’t even express how special and meaningful it was for me. Back in the summer of 2020 my donor’s sister, (and friend) asked me to be a bridesmaid in her wedding. Instant tears flooded my eyes when she asked me, because I feel so blessed and honored to have met such a wonderful family due to my donor, Monica’s gift of life 8 years ago. So, in November Mom & I set off for North Carolina to attend Meredith’s wedding! We did so as safely as possible and had such a fantastic time with so many beautiful, loving and accepting people who are more like family than anything else. Though Monica wasn’t able to stand next to her sister in the flesh, she was still there in other ways, in spirit, and her lungs still breathing in me and for me.
This past year we have been able to stay covid free due to quarantining, taking many precautions, and not being around many people. This year has been devastating for so many people in so many ways and I feel for everyone. I’m sure many of you have struggled, as I have too, with mental health due to having to change your life completely. Day after day we feel like we do the same ole routine we do every other day of the week, it becomes exhausting. I want to encourage you all to reach out to people, because it could not only help your mental health, but another person’s as well. I would also ask you all to please be as responsible as you can and do your part in helping lower the spread of covid. Unfortunately, covid seemed like a death sentence if I were to get it due to my nonexistent immune system. I and so many other people do not have a choice but to take this virus seriously, as it could end our life very quickly. I’m so thankful for everyone who has taken this seriously not just for themselves, but for everyone who isn’t as lucky with good health and a working immune system.
Now to why I write this letter every year. We are still trying to find a CURE for Cystic Fibrosis. Not just that, but the money raised for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation also goes toward research to benefit people who are post-transplant, like myself. They are trying to find ways to make the life expectancy for people after transplant a whole lot longer! I have made it 8 years past my transplant so far and each day has been a blessing, but I want to live SO much longer. I have so much more love to give to my family, friends, and nine pets. I have so many more breaths to take and I’ll be able to accomplish that with your help. As always, we want to tell you how much we appreciate each person who supports us every year.
As we continue to write our letter every year, we will be trying to save stamps (they’re not cheap) and save paper by sending letters via e-mail. Don’t worry, we will still send the physical letter if you prefer it, but if you don’t mind us sending it via e-mail, please write your email down on a slip of paper for me and send it with your donation, if you are able to donate! If you are not able to donate, please feel free to e-mail me your e-mail address so we can continue sending you a letter. (email@example.com) Also, if you would like to keep up with me on a more regular basis, feel free to add me on Facebook, I’m the only Monica Lerew on there, ya can’t miss me!
With love and appreciation,
Three Ways to Contribute to the Great Strides Walk to Cure Cystic Fibrosis
Mail: Please send your donations to the following address preferably before the above walk date, yet we always accept donations for whenever you want to send them!
Make checks payable to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation ~
Send to: Monica Lerew
Newberry, FL 32669
Share with someone: Getting others involved with our effort also helps our cause. In addition to your own contribution, would you consider sharing my letter with someone you know to see if they too would like to contribute. I am so thankful to all who donate as every little bit counts.