Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Xtreme Hiking

Nine years ago, one of my wife's 3rd grade students was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis-- a genetic disorder that compromises the body's ability to regulate sweat, digestive fluids, and mucus.  CF leads to chronic lung infections and a rapid decline in organ function.  And sadly, there is no cure.

In November Faith will turn 18— which would have been the life expectancy of a CF patient only 10 years ago.  Today, a CF patient's average life expectancy is 35.  Advances in technology and medical research have been extremely promising, but it's not good enough.  Children like Faith shouldn't fear the future— they should be able to go to college, marry the ones they love, raise children, play with their grandchildren, and pursue their passions.  It's unimaginable that my daughters might not live to be as old as I am right now.

After Faith's initial diagnosis, my wife and I became increasingly involved in supporting the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.  In the past, we have participated in the Great Strides Walk for the Cure to Cystic Fibrosis— a 3-mile walk with CF patients and their families.  

This year, we're challenging ourselves to do more to combat this disease...

On September 28, 2013, my wife and I will be participating in the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation's Xtreme Hike.  We'll be hiking 31 MILES of Virginia's Massanutten Mountain Trail  IN ONE DAY.  We'll start our day at 2:30AM and (hopefully) finish early enough in the evening for dinner and a beer.   A small group of a couple dozen hikers have committed to the hike.  One of the hikers has an 4-year old son, Brody-- who has CF.  Yes, we're crazy— but we're hiking to raise money for Brody, Faith, and every other person who has had to live with this terrible disease.

This blog has several goals:
  • to raise awareness about CF and the patient's it effects
  • to share stories of our training and  journey-- neither my wife nor I are hikers.  We barely find time to walk around the neighborhood with our daughters! So we have a lot of training ahead of us!
  • to solicit donations to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation...and this is where YOU come in...

Dianne and I have a goal to raise $5,000 towards finding a cure to CF. All of the money raised (except a small amount for lodging the night before the hike) will go directly to the CF Foundation's research initiatives.   Also, all donations are tax deductible.  If you would like to donate to our hike, please click on the link below. Even a few dollars will help get us  to our goal of $5,000.   Please just put us on your prayer list for the hike.... did I tell you the Massanutten Mountain Trail has black bears, bobcats, and eastern timber rattlesnakes? AND we'll be hiking for FIFTEEN hours.  We will need all the prayer we can get! :)  

Feel free to pass on our fundraising website to any friends or family that you think would like to make a donation.  

Yeah, 31 miles in a day is crazy— but it's not half as crazy as taking 50  pills a day so that your body can absorb nutrients from ordinary food.  This challenge will kick our butts, but it isn't nearly as rigorous as the normal day in the life of a CF patient.

Thank you so much for thinking of us and everyone who lives with CF!
Sincerely, Scott & Dianne Seaborn


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