My daughter is my hero. This year Sarah Grace would have been serving as the ambassador for Great Strides in Memphis. She had been looking forward to celebrating at the zoo and walking with so many people who support her and others fighting Cystic Fibrosis. As we know, that isn't happening today.
In February, she was hospitalized for an exacerbation of her CF. This hospital stay was different from her previous admission over two years ago - more traumatic and memorable, but not because things went poorly. Don't worry, she's doing well! However, she's older now. She's wiser and understands what is happening around her. She was frustrated and in pain over multiple attempts to have an IV to give her the critical antibiotics to heal her. She was bored and lonely, despite having her family at her side continually and lots of crafts to do after completing her homework. This visit reminded her that she is different.
After returning to school for just a few short days, the school closed for Spring Break and never reopened. While Sarah Grace initially worried about getting sick from the novel coronavirus, she has now settled into a routine because she feels safer at home. She is one of those who are "high risk" because illnesses hit her harder and damage her lungs - something she can ill afford as we try to preserve her lung function as long as possible.
Sarah Grace loves God, her family, her friends, and school. She delights in playing with her pets and has embraced and enjoyed sports to keep her active and healthy. Small things make her happy: strawberries, a new craft, reading a good book, building legos with her sister, or completing her first cross country race. However, she is different and she feels it. Sometimes Cystic Fibrosis and all of its health complications, including CF-related diabetes, weigh on her. But she has never wanted to skip treatments or use CF as an excuse. When CF knocks her down, she gets right back up. She finds her smile, her determination, and her love for life. These things and the love of her family and friends carry her forward. She has courage and all the qualities of a true hero. Sarah Grace is my hero.
Cystic fibrosis affects tens of thousands of people in the United States, predominantly children and young adults. Real progress has been made in the search for a cure, but the lives of people with CF are still cut far too short. There is no cure for this devastating disease.
In honor of what would have been the 2020 Memphis Great Strides Walk, I am walking virtually and still seeking to raise funds to support cystic fibrosis research.
I would be honored if you would consider making a donation on behalf of my daughter, Sarah Grace, to my Great Strides fundraising campaign today! Your support is deeply appreciated and gives us tremendous hope for the future! Thank you on behalf of Sarah Grace, the mission of the CF Foundation, and Great Strides!