There are alot of emotions to process after yesterday's race. As I start to do that, I'll begin writing about it. For now, here is the speech that I gave before we began...
Thanks to everyone for being here. I can't tell you how overwhelming this is for our family but I want to also tell you just how humbling it is in general. Some of you are here because you love Mabel. Some of you are here because you wanted to run a 5k. Some of you are here because our story touched your heart. I'm here to tell you that Mabel is just one of thousands of children who live with a rare disease. They have all touched my heart at one time or another and that is exactly why we are here. That is why we created "Mabel's Able."
Just one month ago, after searching for 2 years for answers to Mabel's medical mysteries, we received a diagnosis. The diagnosis is heavy but our family is one of the lucky ones. Right now, as we stand here, hundreds of mommy's are awake early checking on their children and praying that they are ok after a night of restless sleep. Hundreds of dads are dismayed, knowing that they can't fix whatever is happening with their child. Thousands of people around us are still living without answers. They are undiagnosed. Because I have now lived in both worlds, I can truly stand here and say that not having answers is the hardest place to be. I want to be a voice for those family's today and tell you "thank you." Thank you for taking the time to listen. Thank you for taking the time to stand in the gap on their behalf. Thank you for joining with them and allowing them to feel your efforts. These family's should never feel more alone than they already feel. You're helping to change that today.
We are now on the other side of the fence. We now have a beautiful child with a disheartening diagnosis. And again, we are only one of thousands. No one is exempt from this happening to their family. Our slogan for "Mabel's Able" is alone we are rare but together we are Able. This is because every single one of us has genes. We all have 6 or 7 mutations in those genes. Genetics involves everyone. All of you could be where we are at some point in your life and some of you are there now. I want to make sure that if ever you need us, we are here for you just like you have all been for us.
The goal of Mabel's Able is to educate, advocate and empower families who are living without a diagnosis or with a rare one. Today you are helping our family feel empowered to fight this battle with our little girl and to go forward in doing the same for other family's as well. We don't want to do this alone. We don't want anyone else to have to either.
Parents-if you are here with your own children today, please walk away from this race and talk to them about children like Mabel. They are part of her future. They are her friends. They will be the individuals who will either tease her or care for her. They will either love her or judge her. Please help us to raise up a community of young children who are empathetic and powerful in the love that they show to others. Please help us to equip them with the information that they need so that one day they will have understanding of what makes children like Mabel so unique and incredibly special. It is our job to never allow this to be in vain, even for our little town of Clinton IL.
You all are fibers in the strong rope that is holding us together. Your support, encouragement, love and prayers is incredible. We are so blessed to now have a platform to share in that gift with other families.
Please remember today as you're running or walking, that you have been given a wonderful gift. With every step you take and every breath you breathe, let's thank God for the ability to do so. And let's rock out this 5k for Mabel and all of the other children whose lives are different and so valuable.
And awesome it was.
So awesome, I'm without words.