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Why My Daughter Chooses to Challenge Herself


I am so so proud of my daughter. She has proven she can challenge herself and do anything.

Last week, she competed in the Inter Schools Cross Country and ran 1.5 km.

Am I proud because she won? No. She came third to last out of 80 children from 10 different schools.

I am proud because she never gave up.

author's daughter running

Ten weeks ago, she was admitted to hospital and diagnosed with a rare kidney disease, nephrotic syndrome.

Nephrotic syndrome is an autoimmune disease where her immune system attacks her kidneys. They no longer work as they should, and instead of filtering protein into her blood stream, they dump it into her urine.

When she was discharged from hospital she was on high dose steroids for eight weeks. These made her super super hungry and accentuated all of her moods. It was interesting, especially for a 10-year-old girl.

Yet despite this, she ran the school cross country two weeks ago and qualified in the top eight in year five girls at her school. This meant she could compete in the inter schools cross country champs today.

She knew going into this that she would not be in the front of the pack, but she wanted to do it to show she could.

It was tough. There were hills. It seemed longer than at school. It hurt, but she kept going. She never gave up.

I am so happy for her. She may have a rare disease, but that doesn’t stop her.

I believe we could all learn so much from my daughter’s journey and others like hers. Life is not all roses, and sometimes we need to dig deep. One of the greatest gifts we can teach our children is that of resilience and never giving up.

Image Credits: Kirsten Thrush

This story originally appeared on Essential Life Balance