The Walk

“How was the walk?”

“It was great. HUGE turnout. Like more than 20,000 people. And over $1 million was raised!”

“Wow! How far did you walk?”

“Um… well, um… Actually, um, w… we, uh, never made it onto the track.”

“Oh.”

But we walked…. From the parking lot…

to the track…

And we ran… After Rhema.

The Greater Boston Autism Speaks Walk was held Sunday at Suffolk Downs racetrack. It was a cold day, but a glorious event. Brandon could not attend because he had to work (the good old Army), but my twin and her husband came to help me manage my two little walkers. I was heartened and amazed to see so many people come out in support of autism awareness and research.

Rhema was amazed, too, by one thing. The inflatable bouncy house.

Every time we inched a little closer to the racetrack, the little darling would bolt from the stroller and make a bee line to the bouncy house. We let her jump.  We loaded her back in the stroller.  She escaped.  We let her jump.  We loaded her back in the stroller. She escaped…

So sorry I didn’t get to meet up with my bloggy mama friends, Jess and Judith.

Perhaps one of the greatest gifts that has come as a result of Rhema’s challenges is the way people have showered us with blessings. It’s been said that when you have a child with disabilities, you meet a whole new class of people. I know it’s true. ~Take Rhema’s home ABA therapist. She knew that Rhema could not play with play-doh because of the gluten it contained, so she went out of her way to find a gluten-free recipe and made play-doh for Rhema out of rice flour.  ~Rhema’s teachers at school often put up with tantrums, bites, pinches, scratches, and messes and they LOVE her every minute of the day. ~A thoughtful friend I only recently met at church buys me books on autism… just to be helpful… and she calls me and encourages me.  ~When our health insurance did not cover a speech therapy visit, our speech therapist told us she’d rather come over for dinner than be paid.  ~There are bloggy mamas out there whom I’ve never met in person who continually pray for my Rhema and our family.  We are blessed indeed.

The Walk reminded me, yet again, that we do not walk alone.

As we were leaving, the director of Rhema’s school called out, “Thanks for being here!”

No.  THANK YOU.

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. 1 Thess 5:11 (NIV)

When we learn the generosity which without calculation helps men in the simplest things, we too will know the joy of helping Jesus Christ himself. —Barclay’s Daily Study Bible

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16 thoughts on “The Walk

  1. i might think of somethng to say, but i’d have to stop crying first, damn it .. er, darn it .. so sorry we missed you, but it matters not, my friend .. we all walk together

  2. Finally, someone else who considers it “Walk Accomplished” if she gets her kids to exit the car even briefly in the parking lot. That’s exactly what my son and I did for the Walk4Autism here, and I think it totally counts. One look at the crowd of people and the long road ahead of us, and he was done. I picked up our T-shirts, turned in our money, and high-fived Taz. Yay us!

  3. =)
    Thanks, mama mara.
    And when I said “we walked from the parking lot to the track”, that includes waiting in line to register my sis, picking up our T-shirts, potty stops, going through the resource fair, snapping a couple picts, re-arranging hats, gloves, coats… we were there for hours even though we never walked the track!

  4. That’s some team you have there! I never even thought of asking a therapist to come around to dinner [dinner time is a bit noisy around here so it wouldn’t be much of an invitation!] Glad to hear that the bouncy castle was so attractive, next time attend with several yards of elastic! Well done you!
    Cheers

  5. Oh yes. Walk Accomplished, absolutely.

    Way to go. And, thanks for being here!

    P.S. Nice job of tying it in with our flower-girl adventures of last year through your comment over by us…

  6. “He gives strength to the weary
    and increases the power of the weak.

    Even youths grow tired and weary,
    and young men stumble and fall;

    but those who hope in the LORD
    will renew their strength.
    They will soar on wings like eagles;
    they will run and not grow weary,
    they will walk and not be faint.

    (Isaiah 40:29-31)

    Love the pictures! 😉

  7. I agree that those are great pictures. What a blessing to have support. It’s also a comforting thing to know that there is a different class of people out there. Often times, the average person doesn’t see it. And praise God for “the walk”. You’re on it everyday. This event was just another beautiful step in it.
    Love you, praying for you.

  8. “Few people know how to take a walk. The qualifications are endurance, plain clothes, old shoes, an eye for nature, good humor, vast curiosity, good speech, good silence and nothing too much.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

    “Few people know how to take a walk. The qualifications are NO clothes, NO shoes, an eye for mudpuddles and any other slimy dirty offering nature might present along the way, no direction, no destination, no rules, nothing too much.”
    – C. Norbury for Grayson Faith Norbury

    Here’s to you Rhema, Walk your own Walk baby girl.

  9. Glad you guys had a great time. BTW, they do make gluten free play-doh, they sell it at Discount School Supply. We haven’t bought it for Kayla yet because she HATES playdough, it makes her cry, LOL.

  10. good to see photos! I love that you had to chase her down, that made me smile! I could just see it…. Rhema loves life and just goes for it! My kinda girl! Smiles and huggs to you all!

  11. Our walk is next week in San Diego. I know how you feel. Last year I named our team, “You Never Walk Alone.” This year we’re the “Kingsmen Roadies” since Reid and his band are singing to kick it off. I don’t even attempt to walk…just applaud and hope for a shout out from the stage! Fun to know you’re a twin. My Reid and Allie are boy girl twins.

  12. That is awesome! I admire you for getting that far :). We haven’t been to any of the walks yet mostly because of the crowds (10,000+ which is great that so many people are there but no way could our boys handle that kind of crowd, not yet at least) and also the fact that we’d spend most of our time chasing after the boys and we are outnumbered! Someday, when the boys are a little older hopefully we will be able to go :).

  13. We were honored by the overwhelming tide of love at the walk. I can still see the children’s faces on the shirts of various teams and hear the cheers of *actual* walkers as they came full circle. Between cold hot cocoa and your curious excitement over non-gluten free pretzels, the smiling eyes of friends on this journey will never cease to compel us to even more fervent prayer. Thank you, Rhema.

  14. Pingback: Greater Boston Walk Now for Autism Speaks 2010 « Autism In a Word

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