Wow, look at me go! I'm a blog-posting machine right now! It helps that I have a lot to say though! Look out!
Back in early April, I was welcomed at a meeting for the Linwood Lions Club. I got the opportunity to speak in front of a very warm and welcoming crowd. I told them a lot about Kate, Angelman Syndrome, our dreams for our baby girl, and this park we're trying to build. They listened intently and let me ramble on with my story! I handed out my business cards and left the meeting with thunderous, tumultuous applause following me. I was overwhelmed by their support and spirit. I had to turn back to take a look at them as I left. These strangers were wonderfully supportive and brought me to tears of happiness and hope as I left the Linwood community centre and drove home. Today, I received the result of that meeting: a cheque for $5 000! I am blown away by this donation. Linwood isn't even in Woolwich township, but that didn't matter to these people! Wow. I am just...wowed. I will never, ever forget moments like these. Never. Thank you Linwood Lions!
We are super excited for McHappy Day this WEDNESDAY! Jeremy and I will be working at the Elmira McDonalds from 4:30 - 5:30 and Kate and Jamie will be at the restaurant with Grandma and Grandpa. Please stop by for a visit if you can! The following locations are participating: Elmira store, St. Jacob's Walmart, Ira Needles Walmart, King & Wellington store, Victoria St store, Ottawa & River Rd, Market Square and the Welland Stores. A portion of their McHappy Day funds will be donated to Kate's Kause.
Amidst all of this excitement, two very dear family members were verbally attacked this past weekend for our efforts for Kate's Kause. We were accused of exploiting our daughter Kate, amongst a horrible bunch of other details. It's upsetting, but doesn't make me sad. It only makes me angry. And as I've been telling people since Kate's diagnosis, I already have a lot of anger in me! While I know that we are bound to encounter this type of insensitivity and outright ignorance, I won't take it lying down. At the Integration Action for Inclusion anniversary last weekend, I had a moment where I realized that taking good care of Kate and fighting on her behalf for FULL INCLUSION is what I was BORN to do. I am a passionate person, who loves deeply and wears her heart on her sleeve. We, our unbelievable family, our friends and colleagues, local churches, community groups, the provincial and federal governments who granted us charity status, have all SUPPORTED and ENDORSED the charity that is Kate's Kause and will all take up the fight against ignorance. Bottom line: I want a better environment for my Kate to live in. People are entitled to their opinions, but there is no excuse for ignorance - it's only motivation is to cause pain. As Kate's mom, it's my job to stand up to ignorance. And in this case, it's quite easy to do. I love a good battle of wits - especially when the opponent is completely unarmed. :-)
So join us on McHappy Day this WEDNESDAY and stand up against ignorance. Stand up for kids like Kate, who have no voice, and need people like you who are kind and tolerant and will support full inclusion. This is a fight worth fighting for. This is a fight for my beautiful daughter Kate, who deserves all the goodness the world can give. I know you love Kate too. I can feel the support from all of you - it's touched the deepest parts of my soul. Thank you for reaching out to us. Thank you for making disability not such a lonely and hard road.
Kelly is Kate's devoted, caring, Type-A mom. Kelly is a high school physics teacher who earned her masters degree in neuroscience from McMaster University in 2003.