Uniting 4 Nathan
Organized by: Stephanie R
Hello Darling Friends!
I want to share with you a story about someone who is near and dear to my heart.
My little cousin Nathan is amazing. He's eight years old, has a hilarious sense of humor, is crazy about an eclectic range of rock music, is incredibly intelligent, loves his little sister, and brings a smile to the face of everyone he meets. Nate was born three months early, weighing in at all of two pounds. He was the tiniest, cutest little peanut I've ever seen - and after four months in the ICU, he was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy. CP is a chronic condition that affects muscle control, motor skills, and body coordination. What does that mean? That means that Nate cannot run the bases at a t-ball game, kick a soccer ball into a goal, or communicate easily with others - yet.
Imagine being hungry, but not being able to ask for a snack, or seeing your little sister running around, and not being able to run next to her. Imagine watching your parents care for you, day in and day out, and not being able to tell them you love them.
Some wonderful folks decided to host a benefit for Naters, in the hopes that people could come out, drink some brews, bid on some items, and raise a little money for a good cause - to help cover the myriad costs associated with surgeries, medicines, physical/occupational/speech therapies, doctors' bills, specialized medical equipment, etc.
Not being able to be there for your friends and family is one of the most difficult parts of living overseas - I wanted to try to do something from afar. If you're in the Chicago area, feel free to check out the link below and stop by the benefit!
We will pledge a mile for every $10 dollars you donate! (No, K doesn't know about this, and Yes, he has to do it because we're married now and that's the rule.) I'm at 7,500 feet of elevation, so I promise it will be tough!
At this risk of making this quite long, here is a description of some of the awesome goals for the benefit:
1. An "Eye Gaze" Machine - this incredible computer can sense Nate's eye movements. By JUST moving his eyes, Nate can scroll through lists of options, select what he wants, and then the computer says it out loud. This will open a world of opportunities for him - asking a question he's always wondered about, or telling his little sister he loves her - will be possible. This will be instrumental in his educational progress as well.
2. An adapted bike - This amazing bike is made for kiddos like Nate - a specially designed seat, headrest, and harness and will offer him a very unique opportunity to build his muscles while having fun. This stands out to me as an awesome fundraising goal, because to me, this bike symbolizes a sense of freedom and independence - two of the things I value the most in life (and knowing all of you, you understand exactly where I'm coming from). The bike costs $4,700 (as opposed to an approximately $100 bike for your average 8 year old) - I've set this as our special fundraising goal.
We feel so lucky to have such generous friends - so many of you already donate to other causes, volunteer time, etc. If you don't feel like donating, or can't, a special prayer, happy thought, or positive vibe sent Nate's way is very, very appreciated. Do something nice for someone else, while thinking of him! Power through your next workout in his honor - and appreciate all that your body enables you to do each day. If you can, donate away!
Love you all - thanks for reading.
Steph & Konrad