It was a very big day for our Clan this weekend.
Our first Walk Now for Autism Speaks. My new venture into the cause I care so deeply about.
When I saw the call for teams back in June, I finally took the leap. I e-mailed my SIL (who is behind According to Denise – she’s funny you should follow her) who was also very excited to jump on the Team Train.
So – the next step was to publicly announce it…which is something strange for me, since I really don’t market MYSELF out to people. Sure I’m great with promoting other people but I kinda suck at self-promotion. But my friends and family have been quite supportive. A few people immediately signed up. More donated. My husband’s company did a match. It was, honestly, quite amazing. I thought maybe $1,000 would be great…then maybe $2,000…and then I get an incentive e-mail that if our team raises more than $3,500 we would have VIP treatment and meeting space at the Team Village.
As Barney Stinson would say…Challenge Accepted.
And we did it. As of the Walk we raised $4,430 for the team. Surprisingly I believe we were in the top 15 teams. Beyond my wildest dreams.
On the day itself, I wished we had gotten there earlier. We decided to drive into DC (with 2 kids, a stroller, a box of shirts that I designed, and all extra crap it would have been damn near impossible on Metro) with a friend. Unfortunately (and honestly I shouldn’t be surprised; I have lived here for 15 years) there are other events that happen in DC. And it causes street closures. That day, besides our little thing, there was a bike rally, the Occupy DC protests and it was just one big clusterf*$# driving around.
As Husband would say – Big Ben…Parliament…
Oh and then all the metered spaces are 2 hours, even on Saturdays. Luckily, my friend works in DC and has access to her garage, and after finally getting there, and walking the mile to the Mall…we didn’t have enough time to really see all the cool stuff that they had. There were lots of resource booths, and some carnival games, and of course we missed the Hogettes. If you have never heard of the Hogettes, they are a group of dudes that dress up in granny clothes, don a pig snout, wig and hat and not only support the Redskins but also many charitable events around the area. They are, to say the least, quite amusing.
However, the Team Village space was awesome because SIL got there and managed to snag a good spot so we had enough time to calm down before the Walk.
And speaking of calming down…little Mayor Bee was all sorts of excited. He did so well in the car…walking to the site…and then decided it was time to crash. See, we brought only a single stroller, knowing how Mayor Bee normally hates to be strapped in (and a little walking does all of us good). WRONG CHOICE. He wore himself out before we even got going and it was sometimes a struggle to get him to keep moving. He conned all of us at some point to carry him (thankfully it was a 2.5 mile walk and a very leisurely pace).
But it was all so.very.awesome. It was comforting to look at other parents and know that they understand. That they just “get it”. Because, you see, everyone is different on the Autism Spectrum. There is no one true way to describe someone on the spectrum. The unity among the groups was amazing. And it was even better that as a Team that we had wonderful support for our son.
Oh and we got a cool sign too. Except we left it in my friend’s work bathroom. OOOPSIE. What’s even better is that this is only the beginning. Next year will be even better. And, I’ll know to get there even EARLIER next time.