Yup, you guess it, my birthday is tomorrow (and Abby), every day since finding my purpose, I have been grateful for the day that my life was spared. Five years ago tomorrow, hours after the birth of my youngest daughter, my husband was told that I was not expected to make it through the night. I truly believe that I was brought back to change my world, not just for my family, friends and community but for generations. For the past 3 years, I have asked those closest to me to do random acts of kindness on my birthday instead of gifts.This year in addition to random act of kindness, I am asking that you donate to Crossing Bridges Therapeutic Riding Center in Merlin, Oregon. They are in desperate need of a covered arena to keep riding lessons going during the summer and rainy season. Crossing Bridges not only helps Isaac, but several other children in the area who have special needs. If you are on facebook, please share my blog and challenge your friends and family to do random acts of kindness on this special day. In reality, we should always look for ways to be the change in the world, but people like to do extra special things to honor others. Please hashtag the word #randomactsofkindness2015 so I can see all the cool things that are happening on my birthday.
If you are financially able to give to Crossing Bridges I have set up a Crowdrise, my goal is $2000 but it would be an amazing miracle to raise the remaining balance for the center. The director of the program, Jennifer was hoping to build before its starts raining. I have hope that my faithful followers will help make this dream a reality, my faith is great because I have seen the impossible made possible.
Isaac at the Art Along the Rogue
This past weekend I took my little ones (ok, some are not so little anymore) downtown to the Art Along the Rogue, its a free community event showcasing Art in the street using chalk, there was also live music. The City closes the street and thousands of people gather to see the hard work of some 50 Artist. If you are feeling creative you can even purchase a square and paint your own ideas for $5 bucks. It was nice to get out of the house on a Sunday, we usually go to church, watch football and some of us get a nap. Driving by to find a parking spot, it looked very crowded but fun.
As we entered the street I immediately noticed a wooden wedge (a ramp) against the curb, why was this the first thing that caught my eye? When you have a child with a physical disability, accessibility is what usually prevents us from going to community events, school functions and even a family member or friends house. I really have to ask myself sometimes, “is the hassle worth it?” Seeing the wooden wedges against the curb showed me that the City thought about those who use wheelchairs or walkers. I really appreciated the accessibility, it was not just one ramp there were several. The live music was in the center of the street, we didn’t have to cut through grass or walk out of the way to find a ramp.
In my eyes we have a long ways to go, but I have to always think about how far we have come. To be completely honest, if Isaac was an able-body I don’t think I would have ever thought about accessibility. I didn’t have any family members or friends in wheelchairs and I don’t remember ever seeing anyone in my school who was a wheelchair user. Now it seems to consume me, not to always complain about our issues, but to work together with organizations and community members to see change. It is so easy to sit back and wish things were different, but nothing would ever get done. If we do things like they have always been done, what do we learn?
My son who thought the shark painting was the coolest thing ever, was ABLE to attend a community event like everyone else. You might have just seen a wedge against the curb, but I seen progress and a boy independent. One day Isaac will grow up and move out of my house, I will not be there to help him down a curb 24 hours a day. I have to know that our world cares enough about the future of our country, not just the able-body children but children with ALL abilities.
I think this was a victory!