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The Selfless Act of Kindness My Friend Performed to Raise Money for My Disease

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I’ve always had the support of my husband, his parents and my best friend whenever it was time for the CCFA Take Steps Walk. When it first started, I was on the committee with several other local CCFA chapter volunteers organizing where the event was going to be held, when, the time, calling local businesses asking for donations for the basket raffle, contacting the grocery stores for donated water and sandwiches and asking for more volunteers in spreading the word about the event.

Then when I had my stroke 12 years ago, I had to step down for a few years until I was fully recovered and able to help out with an easier task such as handing out t-shirts to walkers and their children when they registered. It felt good to get out for a while instead of being stuck inside the house. I really enjoyed watching the teams show up wearing the most eye-catching shirts or costumes as well as meeting parents of small children who were recently diagnosed with Crohn’s or ulcerative colitis. Hearing their stories just broke my heart because I could relate to the medication side effects, the many tests being ordered, as well as having many surgeries due to blockages caused by intestinal strictures or adhesions.

Several weeks ago, I was contacted by a former high school classmate who was interested in raising money to find a cure for Crohn’s. She told me she sells jewelry and wanted to have an event on Facebook by inviting our classmates and having a show. Any profits she made from it would be donated to the CCFA Take Steps Walk that our local chapter just had last Sunday. I couldn’t believe what Tina was saying. Here was a classmate I haven’t seen since our 30th reunion last year and out of the kindness of her heart, she thought of me and wanted to host a fundraiser for me.

photo of a woman smiling

I had tears swelling up in my eyes because she wrote to me later on after the online event was over stating, “You’ve had more than your share of trouble and you are still so kind and so open. Many people would not have managed what you have with so much grace. So to me, yes, you are a role model.” I honestly never thought of myself as one because while I was in the hospital, I wasn’t in the best of moods as the nurses were having a tough time trying to stick me with an IV. I was crying, screaming and saying a few choice words that would’ve shocked the principal and resulted in my having to go to confession and telling Father Greg the censored things I had said.

I’ve been truly blessed to have so many friends support me over the years by raising awareness about IBD and donating funds so a cure can be found. Tina’s selfless act of donating her time, talent and company profits has truly touched my heart and still makes me misty-eyed because she took the time to care and really understand what I had to deal with in high school, especially during my senior year. She is definitely one of a kind and I’m glad that we have reconnected since our class reunion.

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Thinkstock photo via RayTango.

Originally published: October 6, 2017
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