We Live Here. We Give Here.
We live here. We give here.
I believe giving back to those around us are one of the most fulfilling things you can do. I am also of the belief that it does not matter what you do to give back; it all matters. Picking up trash at our City Parks, delivering meals to people in need, helping kids learn to swim, feeding young adults who are doing their part to fight cancer, or assisting families in making ends meet during the holidays.
Spring Break this year has been a busy, yet fulfilling time in my world. We had the fantastic pleasure of hosting the Texas 4000 for Cancer 2019 Team at our Gymnastics Facility. This involves preparing and coordinating two meals (Dinner and then breakfast), giving all 85 of them a place to sleep and making sure they know how important their work is. What they don’t understand is, that no matter how much work it is to prepare for that 18 hours they are with us, what they give us is so much more than that. They give us hope that this new generation understands the importance of service, they give us pride that this team is going the extra mile (ok 4500 miles) to make sure cancer becomes a disease of the past, and they share so much love that how can you not be inspired?
Let’s now look at the word “WE” and see how this week unfolded. To feed 85 kids who just rode over 60 miles on a warm day in Texas, you need lots of “stuff.” You need, over 20 lasagnas, 300 bottles of water, 200 pieces of fruit, 85 breakfast tacos and lots of coffee. What you don’t “need” but you got anyway, only out of insane generosity, is 300 ice cream bars (the breakfast of Champions for a few riders), the most amazing chocolate chip cookies that you would not want to tell your mom about because it might hurt her feelings, and a dedicated police officer who provided a protected turn on Highway 71. You also received a plethora of other snacks and goodies, everything that makes life unique.
So how do you get these things? You get them from the generosity of others. From moms who have just as little time as anyone else but they were willing to carve out an hour to bake some lasagnas or 10. From a dad who I know was out of his comfort zone but stepped up anyway. To a cancer survivor who spent hours baking cookies because this ride matters and she knows what is at stake. To gym parents who lugged in a case or two of water when all they probably wanted to do was rest in their cars, to the athletes in our gym who vacuumed and cleaned and prepared for their arrival. To a gym mom who splurged on tacos for everyone and more importantly to the riders, brought the holy grail of coffee…Starbucks.
As the riders left Sunday morning, it felt so sad saying good-bye and yet, I knew I was a better person because they made me better. They ride for so many reasons; they push through even on the toughest days because even on the hardest days, they know that there is no easy day with cancer. How can that not inspire you? How can that not push you to be a better person? How can that not make you say yes, yes and yes again? I can’t wait to say yes to them again.
Do you want to know more about the Texas 4000? www.texas4000.org