I have always thought of the beginning of the school year as my January 1st--the time to make changes and renew projects. My schedule at work chages so much, our schedule at home changes, so why not my ideas? Even though since WIll died I dread the slippery slope into the "Holiday Season." (I just KNOW I will see some Christmas decorations as soon as Labor Day is over!) I am making some positive planns that I hope will counter balance the commercial spirit.
I am planning a booth at my church for the Alternative Gift market to raise funds for our AED purchasing/ CPR training program. I am a Care Minister and since I joined, a group of use have worked on on a project to get AEDs and teach classes in CPR and AED use to members as well as the community. Our Alternative Gift Market is a cool opportunity to buy "gifts" for friends and family who already have too many things by donating to charities in their honor. I have been buying gifts for my family there ever since WIll died. I have given chickens and sheep from the Heifer project, a stove for people in Guatemala, and a bed from Bed Start. The Bed Start program is one for children in Plano who don't have beds to sleep in.
I also have been networking with different Heart related support groups in our area. One of them is the American Heart Association. In the past, the AHA has never been particularly interested in providing information and support to parents of children with congenital heart disease. THey are slowly trying now to reach out. Of course, there is some bad feeling out there, and parent groups who have been struggling for recognition for years are not necessarily interested in their help. However, I think we should see if we can figure out how to try and take andvantage of their rescources because they are a powerful and well known organization and they can help get some attention to the fact that CHD kills more kids that childhood cancer. The AHA headquarters is Dallas, so I am hoping I can talk to some high level honchos.
I am excited, and I hope that my slowly improving health (I survived my surgery!) can give me the energy to keeep going.