Friday, June 30, 2017

What Courage Looks Like

I mentioned a few weeks ago that Tim and I had signed up for the Climb for Courage benefitting Children's Hospital Colorado Foundation. Early last Saturday, we gathered at the U.S. Air Force Academy stadium. The event is a stair climb race, which means we were climbing up and down 2700 stairs in the stadium.

Lauren is a patient ambassador for Children's Hospital this year and was ready to cheer everyone on at the starting line.

Tim and I both finished with respectable times. He was a few minutes ahead of me and nicely took pictures as I crossed the finish line.

We all enjoyed the Family Fun Fest while waiting for the rest of the runners to finish the regular race. Since it was a staggered start to the race, we had quite a bit of time to wait.

Lauren then gathered with the other ambassadors at the starting line for the Fun Run portion of the event.She gave Michael and Carter high-fives, then continued to cheer on everyone as they started.

Tim and I weren't needed to help and were therefore standing a little ways away. We were actually trying to get to see Lauren's picture on the big screen. She told us it had been up there, but we were too busy trying to climb stairs to see it.

All of a sudden, we looked down and saw that Lauren had started the race. After all the rest of the competitors had started the Fun Wave, she started walking. And walking. Up and down steps all around the stadium.

The Fun Run portion only covers the lower bowl of the stadium, but it does go up and down all of those stairs (14 flights, I think) before ending on the field.

We didn't know exactly what happened at the starting line. And actually, we still don't really know. It seems as though Lauren said that it looked like fun and that she wanted to do it after all. She has a bit of an independent spirit and was ready to do it all by herself. Someone from the GE Johnson team was standing nearby and couldn't imagine letting her go by herself. Lauren's new friend walked with her the whole way.

Here they are walking through the tunnel,

out on to the field,

and finally our amazing little girl crossed the finish line!

The annual Climb for Courage celebrates the courage of all the children who are treated at Children's Hospital Colorado and specifically raises money for the new Colorado Springs location.

In my book courage looks like a little girl who had a heart transplant eight years ago, five hospital stays in the past year, umpteen doctors' appointments both here and in Denver, eleven years of physical therapy, so many other challenges, and who did the Climb for Courage anyway.

Way to go Lauren! (And a very special thank you to her new friend who stayed by her side.)

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  1. I am absolutely bawling. Way to go, Lauren! I'm proud of you!

  2. This story made me cry with joy this morning. Good job, Lauren!!
    Blessings, Dawn

  3. Proud of your girl!!! What a hero she is!

  4. Amazing!! All of you!!--Michele and Ev



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