Make a muscle, make a difference.
Today’s MDA Muscle Walk in Waco, TX, was nothing short of amazing.
I’m a night owl, so I often joke that I’ve forgotten some of those AM hours even exist. So, having to be an hour away before 10 AM was the one and only aspect of the day I did not look forward to experiencing. At least jokingly so. I don’t mind getting up early for things I care a lot about doing, and supporting MDA and my nephew ranks right up there at the top of that list.
When my alarm buzzed at 7 AM, I slapped it a couple times, wishing for “just five more minutes.” But I’m proud to say I was up before my final, “you better get a move on RIGHT NOW” alarm went off. I even had time to grab a couple bowls of Cheerios before a fast shower and out the door.
My parents and I met my brother and family and some friends at his house, before we all headed towards Waco in a little mini-convoy. We made it to the Baylor Indoor Practice Field with plenty of time to spare.
Two years ago, we all participated in the Dallas Stride & Ride event at Cowboy’s Stadium. I honestly expected this to be a lot time that event, and while it was… it wasn’t. Oh, the focus was the same — MDA — and the idea of walking and riding around the field was the same, but the mood was just more personal.
While we had time to visit with others, the event moved quickly and efficiently. MDA provided signs you could personalize with your team name. They took team photos. We had performances from the Baylor Bear Cheerleaders and the LaVega Pirates Cheerleaders. Singer Holly Tucker performed Mariah Carey’s “Hero” — that brought tears to your eyes.
More importantly, we had people speak on how MDA has helped them and why they were walking today — including my brother, nephew and his other aunt. It just brought everything home even more than before.
Before the actual walk, they had us all do the Cha Cha Slide, which… hilarious and fun.
Then as the walk started, and you looked around at all the people there for the same cause, it was moving. I felt tears well up many times, and I swallowed them down behind my camera. It was powerful. It gave such HOPE. It was simply incredible.
As the walk drew to an end, you couldn’t wipe the smile off my face. My nephew snagged a photo with the whole Baylor softball team. And every student that was there volunteering was helpful and friendly.
I’m an Aggie. But… Baylor really impressed me today.
Today was not about school rivalries (though there was some gentle ribbing by the softball coach that even made me chuckle), it was about MDA. And that was what was SO COOL about it. Race. Religion. School allegiance. What TYPE of Muscular Dystrophy. What is your hometown. None of it mattered. Today we were all together under that roof supporting MDA, and the fight to find a cure.
WOW is all I can say.
I briefly spoke to the woman in charge of the event. She’d left me a wonderful voice-mail the other day thanking me for supporting Cody, and saying she understood that I live so far away and I’d not make it. I wanted to let her know I was there after all, thank her for her call, and then thank her for all she does for MDA. Instead, she thanked ME. I told her that even if I wasn’t here already, this is an event I’d fly back to attend. It was THAT powerful.
THANK YOU SO MUCH to my supporters and donors. Our team came in second place in fundraising, behind the LaVega Pirates, and you actually made me one of the top participants (#7!)!
I seriously can not thank you all enough… from the bottom of my heart. Thank you for your support of MDA.