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the power of big words written by little people

by Alison Qualter Berna

There has been a lot of media follow up about the Grand Canyon adventure and my blind friend Dan’s journey losing his eyesight, facing depression, but then fighting it to become a runner and an inspiration to many.

This particular media story in the Denver Post stands out as one I wanted to share with apple seeds families since it highlights the letters that my daughters Maddie and Sydney wrote to me on the night before my 46 mile adventure.  I opened up the letters at about mile 36, at 3:30am, looking at a full lunar eclipse, completely exhausted and wondering if I could continue on for another 10 or so miles with my four very strong ultra-athletic friends.   I was holding on to the letters until “that moment,” the one I knew would hit each of us, the moment I started to feel down and overwhelmed by the whole thing.  As I pulled them out of my Camelbak and began to read, the tears began to form as I read phrases like, “I just know you’re going to make it!” and “You’re almost there, you can do it mommy!” and “Finish that dream you had a long, long time ago!”    How could I NOT keep going?  If only for my kids?

For me, Maddie and Sydney’s letters highlight a few things.  Sometimes it can feel like our kids are sapping our energy, but their words, their perspective, can also be a boost, even making a giant difference in our days.  I will save these letters forever as a reminder of the incredible power children have to keep us going, the amazing insight our kids have into what we need (and when we need it), and the solid proof that our kids – in the end – are happy when we are happy.

Here is the article!

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