Monday, December 5, 2011

Gift Wrap for Jack

Dear Friends,
        Happy Holidays!! It’s hard to believe that 2012 is almost upon us. I hope this letter finds you and your family well. I’m writing to share some exciting and inspiring news about Pink’s Annual Charity Gift Wrap. As many of you know, Pink’s Charity Gift Wrap has supported several local organizations in the past, including The Battered Women’s Shelter and the Virginia Food Bank. This year I proposed to do something different with the proceeds, some- thing very personal to me. You may know that I have three half-siblings on my dad’s side: Sophie, who will be nine in just a few weeks, and seven year old twins, Jack and Emma. About a year ago, Jack was diagnosed with Duchene’s Disease. More commonly known as Muscular Dystrophy, Duchene’s disease is characterized by general muscle weakness starting in the legs and working its way up, eventually leading to paralysis sometime between the late teens to early twenties. Researchers are currently working to find a cure, but until one is found, the disease is terminal.
      Of course this is devastating news for anyone to receive, and my family certainly went through a period of frustration and sadness. But we have decided to focus on what Jack can do and realize that the best way to support him is to stay positive and give him the opportunity to have a happy childhood. Children affected with MD usually start expressing symptoms before or around the age of five, but are still able to function without braces or a wheelchair until nine or ten, and so far Jack is following this pattern. Despite the difficulties, we want him to have normal childhood--whether it be through trips to Water Country USA or playing soccer in the front yard. Our goal is to make him feel like a child first: love him unconditionally, encourage him to develop his independence, and answer any questions he may have along the way.
      By participating in Gift Wrap for Jack, you will be directly supporting Jack. The money raised will go towards medical expenses, including a bi-annual trip to Cincinatti for check-ups, and necessary home modifications. The charity wrap will be available through Christmas. I truly appreciate your participation in something that is so close to my heart. 

Warm Wishes,