Sunday, July 7, 2013

Fruits of our Labors...

There's been a lot that has gone into Racing for Orphans with Down Syndrome.  Lots of times its pretty tedious.  Some days it's not really all that fun to get up early and go out in the cold to ride a bike in the dark.  I know that it's a huge sacrifice for Andrea in so many ways as well.  Probably the biggest challenge for her is putting up with me when I'm tired and cranky from all the training! :)  But she always handles it with a smile! 

Despite any challenges and sacrifices that may be required it's days like today that make it so worth it.  I've been working with our website guys to update our site the last few months.  As part of this update, I've been reaching out to all of our previous RODS Orphans who our team has raced for and who have a family committed to adopting them.  One of our RODS Orphans named Dylan recently had a family from Utah commit to adopt him.  This is exciting news since I live in Utah!  With the help of my sister Lindee Jo, I was able to find Dylan's new mom on Facebook.  I sent her a short message just introducing myself and anxiously waited for her reply.  When Dylan's mom wrote back, I was humbled by just how many miracles I have seen first hand since starting down this journey for the kids.  Please take a moment to read her message:

Hi Brady- It's really nice to get your message! I can't come up with adequate words of thanks for all you have done for our sweet Dylan. It's amazing and humbling what you and Rod's Racing do for orphans. We didn't know that our boy was a Rod's orphan when we inquired about him, but when we found out I've since been trying to think of a way express our gratitude, but I haven't yet because words just don't seem enough.

Although we aren't a very athletic couple I've told my husband Gavin that we are going to have to change that so we can join Rod's team and pay it forward! Would it be okay to write a post on Rod's facebook page? That would be a start to expressing our appreciation.

We have never met, but you have made a life changing impact in our lives. One night over a year ago in April I was reading a blog and it mentioned your story in the Desseret News and so I clicked over to read it. Little did I know my life was about to change forever. It was from your family's story that I first heard of Reece's Rainbow. After only a few weeks we were committing to our little angel Harmony and then later in October our other little angel Penelope. Our two beautiful Russian dolls that we pray a plead every day that Russia will get it figured out and we can bring them home. In the meantime, there have been some pretty divine and incredible happenings that have led us to our handsome boy. So, to find out that he was a Rod's orphan feels so full circle because it was your story that brought us to Reece's Rainbow, to our girls and Dylan.
Simply.....thank you.

We look forward to meeting you!

Allow me to take a moment to give you some background here.  The very first Ironman I ever raced was Ironman St. George last May.  It was in preparation for this race that we founded RODS Racing.  In trying to share the kids story we contacted all of the local news outlets hoping one would share our story.  Deseret News was the very first news outlet to cover the story.  It's still one of my favorite articles that has been written.  Now well over a year later we just found out that it was this story that introduced this family to Reece's Rainbow.  Within two weeks they committed to adopting a child and later committed to another one!  Unfortunately their little ones they committed to were in Russia and all adoptions there have since been banned.  Heartbroken this family opened their hearts back up and found Dylan.  Ironically enough, of all the many hundred children listed on Reece's Rainbow, Dylan was one who we have chosen to race for as a RODS Orphan.  Dylan's family didn't know that he was a RODS Orphan but it sure seems fitting that he was! 

The purpose of RODS Racing is to raise funding and awareness for Orphaned children who have Down syndrome.  It's easy to track the success we have raising the funding but many times we can't quantify how much good comes from the awareness side.  Do you remember the part in Dylan's moms message that said she was introduced to the news article by someone sharing the RODS Racing story on their blog...?  This proves once again that it's by small and simple things that great things are brought to pass!  Whoever it was that shared the story, I just want to say thank you! 

Nash just celebrated his 6th birthday yesterday.  Andrea and I reflected back to when he was born.  What a wonderful 6 years that it's been for our family and everyone who's life has been touched by our little Nash.  We love you buddy!  We are so thankful that you are our son and that we are your parents.  Here's to many more years of service for all your little buddies.  We couldn't do it without you!

What better way to celebrate a birthday than going fishing!