During the weekend of the Ragnar race my very close friend McKenzie sent me this picture from on top of the mountain. This mountain, Pebble Creek Ski Area, happens to be the same one that I worked at for 3 years before I got sick. The memories and family I have there are close to my heart. McKenzie takes my heart and spirit with her everywhere. She is and does what my body cannot. Everywhere she hikes, bikes, camps, rafts and skis she snaps a picture to capture the moment. Most of them are with a red thumb but all of them capture a perfect moment and wisk me away to where I love to be.
I wasn't sure I was going to make it to the Ragnar to see the team that put in so much time preparing and shared a very important message along the trail. I was so happy to be able to go and share with them. One of my favorite things was when my son realized that everyone had their thumbs painted red and wore the same shirt. To him it was all for his mommy's heart. He counted everyone that was like him over and over again. He always wears his red thumbs year round and he knows that it is for a great reason.
My little brother, Steven, recently painted over 100 thumbs red during a summer camp that he worked at at Idaho State University. He mentioned that so many kids came back saying that they were asked many questions, and some made fun of, until they got the opportunity to share the message. You can't really put that down. I think these kids are great examples for us all. If anyone is put in a position to have to defend themselves everyday it's kids. Steven mentioned that they all ask to have their thumbs touched up when they get chipped. Waita' go guys!
Here is to all those out there that stand up for something worth fighting for. Together we will get the education and word spreading more easily about heart disease and its devastating consequences. Thank you to all who ran and continue to run. I hope next year is even bigger. I will be making big plans to get some education to the community and set up more heart events to raise even more awareness. Thank you also to those who continue to paint those thumbs and those who spread the word.