I need to share with you all about the wonderful support Luke, Kinsley, and I have received throughout this whole process of figuring out and learning about our sweet girl's condition. Obviously, Kinsley requires many visits to doctors, daily therapy sessions, prescription medications, testing, one hospitalization and of course travel to each of these things. Thankfully, we have pretty good insurance which covers quite a bit of this, but of course not all (and obviously it would not cover travel costs). Our trip to the NIH, although free for each appointment, was a somewhat expensive trip when you factor in costs for flights, hotel, car rental, public transportation use (because you do NOT want to drive in and out of D.C.—worst traffic ever), and food, things start to add up.
In addition to that, right now Luke is the only one working. I loved my years teaching, but since finding out about Kinsley's needs we decided it would be best for her if I stay home and focus on helping her and teaching her to become as successful in every way as is possible. I love this new job too. However, being down one less salary does make things a bit more tight.
So, I say all of that to say many, many people including family and friends have been so very generous to us despite our insistence that all we ask for is prayers and encouragement. The most overwhelming generosity of all has come from our church family. When they found out about our trip to the NIH they did a special collection for money to help with our travel expenses. We only allowed it because they asked and we appreciated their desire to help very much. We did not however expect the $1400 they raised from the congregation in one week! We were somewhat overwhelmed. But that was just the beginning. The day after we returned from our trip we got to experience “Kupcakes for Kinsley.” This sweet, sweet event was the idea of one of our dear elders' wives. Unbeknownst to us they invited everyone in the congregation to bake their favorite or cutest cupcakes and bring them to an auction. At the auction everyone from the congregation bid on each others' cupcakes and raised over $2000 more for us! Below are some pictures of the fabulous cupcakes.
But, the giving did not stop there and has not stopped yet! A very kind lady from church who bakes cakes and such professionally took the “Kupcakes for Kinsley” idea and added more. She pledged to sell cupcakes for three weekends in a row and give us all the proceeds. Last night at church she said she's had 80 orders so far! I've tried to tell her it's too much, but she (and everyone) insists that it's not and that they just love Kinsley and us and want to help. And since we've been back we have continuously had people at church bring us more and more saying, "I didn't get to help earlier," or even, "I had some cupcakes and someone asked what they were for and then wanted to donate." Seriously, strangers have given money to church members to give to us. Did I mention that the generosity has been overwhelming?!
Suffice it to say the money raised has far more than covered our traveling expenses, so our plan is to open an account to save all the leftover money and all that seems to keep rolling in. I should mention that our church family is by no means the only people who've shown us such generosity. We've had many friends and family send gifts and money along this journey and this post is to thank you all. You are appreciated! We will use this to continue to see our wonderful new doctors in Bethesda once a year and to help fund our many trips to Little Rock each year to see our neurologist and (soon to be) muscular dystrophy team.
Now, my last note, this is by no means a plea for money, so if you are not one of the people I've mentioned tonight, please do not feel that you need to be! All we ask for is your continued encouragement and prayers for our sweet girl. :)