Friday night was the Grand Finale Gala for "The Man and Woman of the Year". Overall it was a very lovely evening although our sweet little Abbey wasn't feeling good. Definitely put a damper on things. Here's what the days leading up to Friday looked like...
My in laws came into town on Tuesday. They always bring much excitement when they come as the kids look forward to their visit for weeks (we do too :)! We had a few busy days catching up with grandmom and grandpop and getting all the last minute things ready for Friday. From our outfits to my speech to everything else in between, it was a lot to prepare for the big night.
Thursday afternoon Abbey fell asleep on the couch at about 4pm. That's pretty unusual for her as she really doesn't nap much these days. I chalked it up to her just being worn out from playing so hard with grandmom and grandpop and didn't think too much about it at first. By 5:30 she woke up burning up. Ugh. There was no way this kid could get sick the day before this event that we were to be a huge part of. That night she started throwing up.
On Friday, she woke up hot again and not keeping anything down. I spent the whole day laying in bed with her, praying that her fever would break, that she would start keeping something down and that she would get some strength to make it through the evening.
The Boy & Girl of the Year are such a big part of the whole 10 weeks, especially the grand finale. They were counting on us to be there and to fulfill the responsibilities that we had committed to. We were to share our stories with the crowd of nearly 400 people, there was a slideshow of the kids journeys, the kids each auctioned off stuffed animals that they had designed during the live auction and having the little survivors there is such a motivating factors for donors to be able to see first hand, the kind of people that their donations help. So, all that said it would've been very sad for LLS and Abbey if she were not there.
We had a babysitter coming at 5 to stay with Micah and Caleb and we needed to be in the car by 5:15 to get to the VIP event that started at 6. Abbey started throwing up again at 5. I started panicking inside. This poor girl! I could've just cried for her as we laid in my bed looking at her little dress hanging from my bathroom door. I gave her motrin and just started praying that it would kick in quick.
At 5:30, Jim came up and talked to Abbey. I prayed silently as this was pretty much it. We either needed to get in the car all together, or one of us were going to have to stay home with "The Girl of the Year."
Abbey sat up and said "o.k. I'm ready to go." I picked her up, carried her to a stool in my bathroom, styled her hair and slipped her into her little dress.
Once we got there she was so gracious to greet the many people that wanted to meet her and although she wasn't feeling good, she got through the evening. She was such a trooper! I was so thankful when the night was over, that she had made it through and that she was able to be there. She had been looking forward to it for soooo long so if she would've missed it, it would've been heartbreaking.
Altogether, LLS raised over $196,000 from this fundraiser. Abbey & Eric's stories were used throughout the 10 week campaign and again on Friday night to motivate people to give to this cause that has helped so many families like ours and will continue to help many families in the future.
It truly was an evening to remember. It was an honor that Abbey was chosen to be "The Girl of the Year" and it feels so good to be able to use our trial to help others.
Aunt Patty putting on Abbey's "Girl of the Year" sash.
Waiting for a toast to start off the evening.
Sharing our story with the crowd
Abbey & Eric (Boy of the Year) auctioning off the bears that they designed. Their bears each went for $700!!!
Our family :)
And if you're wondering how Abbey is feeling now.... She's much better as of today (Monday). She got worse after Friday night and had a couple really rough days. She's on the mend now, but poor Micah is out for the count. He's pretty sick :(! Hoping he kicks it soon and that no one else gets it!