July 25, 2010, I sat on a gurney in the middle of Littleton Hospital. I had wiped a series of endless tears, knees curled up, police milling around, nurses giving me sad, uncomfortable looks……I was desperately searching for meaning in my life.
We had just lost our girl.
I took a wadded, snotty Kleenex in one hand and held my Aunt Tracy’s palm in the other, “I don’t know what to do with the rest of my life.”
She squeezed my snotty hand back, “You will find it.”
I wasn’t so sure. I wasn’t so sure at all.
Somewhere along the twisted, half-blind trail of grief, we started a memorial fund for Samantha. I stared at the $8,000 we had raised and wondered the next step. What to do with this money? Donate to Children’s Hospital? Give to the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation? Take the money and run? Mexico is nice this time of year……
Instead, my dad and I filled out an application with the Colorado Non-Profit Development Center (CNDC), with the goal to become a nonprofit supporting families impacted by mitochondrial disease in Colorado.
We thought about a name……I wanted a name that was agnostic to my grief, a name that was not about me or my family, I wanted a name that everyone could relate to…..and Miracles for Mito was born.
In the spirit of strength- because no one should walk this journey alone.
The CNDC accepted our application and we started with the $8,000 from Samantha’s Memorial Fund. My friend Laura helped to create our beautiful logo. I cried in a Walmart parking lot as I reviewed the butterfly composed of two hearts with the intricate mitochondria connecting the wings. It was perfect.
It was love. It was my heart. It was my grief, my soul.
Eleven years later, it is with bittersweet feelings that I write this post. Eleven years later, I announce to this sacred tribe that we are dissolving Miracles for Mito as a nonprofit.
I want you to know that eleven years later, my heart and mind have settled into this decision. I will always walk away with apprehension, wondering what more we could have done, the difference that could have been made.
I also want you to know that eleven years later, I am okay to move on from this space. I need to move on from this space. That eleven years later, the half blind, grievous person has given herself permission to do something else with her life.
Sometimes movement is a gift.
What will we do next? Stay tuned. I will not sway far. I will continue to climb mountains and ask you for money in the sake of mitochondrial research and my dear family……it will just look a little different.
Elven years ago I was shattered. Eleven years ago you supported my cause…lets move forward in the spirit of strength…..and I thank you for never letting me walk this journey alone.
Let’s find out what’s next.