The March for Babies here in Raleigh was today. We had a pretty big team marching for Maddie.
From left to right, that’s: me, Catie, Dave, my sister Tracy, (sitting) baby Austin, my cousin Cat, Elizabeth (in the stroller), Tony, and Megan. We’d never met Megan before today (if you’re reading this, hi Megan!), but she was super fun and a very good sport about us lagging behind with our slow toddlers and general foolishness. (We really are sort of a goofy bunch when you get us all together.)
That’s right, I painted my nails purple for Maddie. And I felt the need to document it with photographic evidence, since it happens so very rarely.
The walk was good. It was a little hot, but not as brutal as the weather forecast predicted. Also, no thunderstorms – that was the other thing on the forecast that had us worried. We felt a few random drops of rain here and there, but not even enough to call it a drizzle.
The kids had the most fun after the walk. There was a DJ playing all sorts of dance music at the finish line, so the kids (who had either ridden in strollers or been carried for the entire walk) needed a chance to burn off some energy.
I got Catie the smallest Maddie t-shirt I could get, and I still had to knot it in the back so it wouldn’t look like a dress on her. The part that broke my heart was that when Catie saw the shirt this morning, she pointed at it and said, “Maddie!” She knows her face from being on my lap so many times when I’ve read Heather’s blog. I almost cried then, but I just said, “Yeah, baby, that’s Maddie.”
Throughout the day, she kept pointing at her own shirt, or mine or Dave’s, and screaming “Maddie! Purple!” Yeah, sweetie. You got it.
After a while the toddler energy was contagious, and we all had to dance too.
And we had to snuggle on some babies.
There was one guy who came over to us to ask about Maddie’s story, because he read her dates on our t-shirts. I told him, and he told us that he has 2 daughters, both of whom were born around 26 weeks. One of his daughters is now 8 years old and the other is about to turn 13. He thanks the March of Dimes for them being here and healthy today. Talking to him for just a couple of minutes was really moving.
Oh, and I believe that when you factor in the almost $200 that my cousin raised through bake sales at her office, our team raised a combined total of almost $1,000 for the March of Dimes. So that’s a pretty great day right there.