Wednesday, June 29, 2011

"Community Autism"

Every Thursday my email inbox receives a weekly 'newsletter', actually it's more of a personal letter, from Graham Long who is the Pastor of The Wayside Chapel in Kings Cross. In this letter to The Wayside's "Inner Circle", as Graham puts it, are personal stories and updates on everything Wayside & Graham are up to and it is an email I receive regularly that I look forward to. Anyway in this weeks letter Graham said the following:

".... here I am typing on this beautiful laptop that was a gift of the Kings Cross Rotary; on the next table is a man absorbed with his phone; he's clearly not talking to anyone but he has headphones on and must be playing some kind of game. On the other side is a woman who is reading a document on her iPad. Near her is a couple having breakfast, each of them on the phone to someone; a good number of people walking past have earphones on, they look like they know where they are going although they are quite disengaged from their surroundings; at the fountain there are a couple of people taking photos of themselves; right next to one of these is a man whom I know by sight, engaged in an intense discussion with someone who appears to be not present; a woman walked past just now who I've never known to be psychotic but she's having a fight this morning, it's a full blown argument with someone who appears to be invisible (I once saw this lady's bare bone through an ulcer in her arm); poor sausage, I'm sad to see that she is not really with us today. Traffic is at a standstill because of roadworks in Macleay St and horns are blaring non stop. Philosophically, cars are more like waiting rooms than they are a means of transport these days. I can't see a single car with more than one person in it. If I didn't know better I'd think that I'm looking at a kind of community autism."

This paragraph stopped me in my tracks. I read it and then read it again. Graham's observations are oh so true for many of our communities. We all seem to disengage from our surroundings allot of the time. This is exactly what we are trying to help Felicity NOT to do. When we enter the playroom with Felicity we want to be 100% present. We try to create an environment of complete acceptance, energy, enthusiasm, love and want for anything Felicity gives us - wether a quick glance from the corner of her eye, a full blown Felicity style dance and song or even if it's an hour of, what seems like, Felicity is ignoring that we are right there!

Everyday things can catch up with us and put us into a bit of a 'detached routine' but if we took the time every morning and thought: “Be The Change That You Wish To See In The World” - (as said by Gandhi) just imagine the force of nature you could be! And who knows it might even rub off onto others around you... imagine that?!?

Thanks for the reminder Graham xx

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Race Day T-Shirts

We are thrilled to have some very snazzy t-shirts for our runners to wear on their race day/s this year!!

Designed, printed and so generously donated by Billy Mac Clothing these shirts match our website and blog PERFECTLY - aren't they awesome?!?

These will be worn by our runners to show all those who see them why they are taking each step of the race they are running - Thank you so so so much Billy Mac Clothing for helping us & Felicity!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Thanks Sammy!

On May 15th a good friend of Felicity's ran her very first 1/2 Marathon! Sammy, we are so very proud of you and forever grateful for the gift you are to Felicity for taking on this massive challenge!! WooHoo!!

We asked Sammy if she would maybe write a few lines about her run and these gorgeous words are what Sammy had to share:
“The thought of doing a half marathon was both exciting and incredibly scary. I am a personal trainer and dancer so was reasonably fit but to run a half was definitely a long stretch. I’m always up for a fun challenge and to be able to raise money for felicity was the driving force. I lived next door to her for almost a year and was lucky enough to be able to spend time with her. The strength and love from felicity’s family and her wonderful nature made me compelled in any way I could to give back. The training was tough and the closer I got the more anxious I got. A week to go I was so freaked out…I thought I wasn’t going to make the cut off times…then several days before I accepted that I was running for the right reasons, and however far I got would be an incredible achievement…and that attitude helped me run the half in 2:36! I have performed on stage and presented in front of thousands of people, and completed events before but running the half marathon was one of the most incredible experiences of my life! The thought of felicity laughing and skipping besides me, and calling out my name kept me going…I imagined her living the most incredible life possible and reaching all her hopes and dreams…that for me inspired me that I can do anything. I would recommend anyone to go out there and try…for the experience, and if not that, to help a little girl live the best life possible”

Thanks again & again Sammy - truly AWEsome!!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Getting ready to race for 2011!

Another year, another bunch of races & keen runners for our Running The Marathon Of Autism campaign!

We congratulate Sammy on the Half Marathon she ran on May 15th. This was a HUGE effort for Sammy and what a gorgeous thing for her to do it in Felicity's name! We are yet to work out the final tally from the donations and sponsorships made to Sammy's race but believe it stands around the $700 mark - Thank you Sammy!

The next race we are counting down to is the Gold Coast Half Marathon on July 3rd. Maryke will be taking this race on and also using it as part of her training for when she runs the Melbourne full Marathon in October this year.

Between those two races is the Sydney City2Surf. With less than 10 weeks to go until the August 14th race we have (so far) 4 registered runners ready to take on the 14kms for Felicity! Sarah, Paityn, Greame and me (Amy) are squeezing in morning runs and training sessions to build up our fitness in the hope we don't all drop dead on race day!!

Bring it on!!