Wednesday, October 2, 2013

recommitting myself to this writing thing

Well, I gave it the ol college try. And just like my real-life college experience, I started out really into it and did some killer work....and then crashed and burned.

Sorry Inhale-Exhale-Repeat. You deserve better. And better you shall receive!

So I'm back ladies and gents. And with my apologies.

Of course you can imagine the topics I intend to cover are gonna be pretty in line with what they have been - CF, transplant, etc - but be prepared to see the "etc" portion grow significantly. Since life has been pretty dull (THANKFULLY) on the transplant experience front as of late, I have been able to dive into things that I have not been able to in the past and I am loving it.

And I am not ashamed to admit that I need your help, support and, well, your money. I am shameless - get over it. You knew that about me when you started following this mess. I even put a disclaimer in the "About Me" section. If you didn't read that well, that's your bad.

Gotta love how I ask (beg) for your help, all the while criticizing (insulting) and scolding you right? I am a woman of many talents, what can I say. I think its all part of the charm. And I know that's why you love me. Or at least tolerate me and talk about me behind my back like normal people.

And now dear readers, lets address what I'm doing to make a difference and how you can (should) too!

Aside from gracing the blog-o-sphere with posts like these gems, I have committed myself to doing more work with a few groups (some still in the works, so we'll stick to the biggies for now). I'll focus on each one individually so that I can really commit to telling you what you need to know. See? I'm already doing better with this who recommitment commitment!

Number 1 - and the one you are gonna wanna pay the closest attention to - is the More Than Just Me Foundation. My friend Tommy Danger - no that's not his real name, but yes he will answer to it - made headlines last year when he completed a run of 3200 miles from Seattle to Daytona Beach to raise awareness for CF. Thousands follow him on all his various social media outlets. Building on the momentum of that run (labeled More Than Just Miles) he founded the More Than Just Me Foundation that has just spear headed its next campaign for CF called More Than Just Mountains. This crazy man and three of his crazy buddies head out to Mt Kilimanjaro in Africa next month to summit for CF! Through this #MTJMtns campaign, we hope to raise ONE MILLION DOLLARS for CF. These guys will be attempting to summit the seven highest peaks around the globe over the next few years. Through sponsorships for the climbs, we hope that ONE MILLION can be raised (through individual donations and commitments from companies) COMPLETELY FOR CF. We aren't just raising money so these guys can have a good time - trust me on that one.

Clockwise From Top Left: Tommy Danger, Mark Noland, John Burkett & John Renken

THIS IS WHERE YOU COME IN. Got a friend at an airline? Work for a company that has a giving heart and would love to see their name and logo in news outlets around the globe? Wanna get your name on the flags that will be left at the highest summits in the world? GET INVOLVED and help us out. If you have connections of any kind, we'd love to see what kind of relationship we can build. These are the things we can use your help on, should you have the means:

GEAR - climbing gear for mountains like these don't just consist of a hoodie and an ENO hammock. It takes a lot of really high-tech, expensive gear to protect these guys from the incredible high altitudes and extreme climates. If you have connections with a company that can help outfit these guys with the proper gear please get in touch with me. Even local outfitting stores who have the ability to donate some goods at wholesale costs would go a long way. No help on this front, could be the difference between life and death for these guys.

AIRFARE - believe it or not, flying to Africa is not cheap. In fact airfare for these trips can costs thousands. I know, surprised me too. I mean all I could think of were these tiny planes half duct taped together landing in fields somewhere, and honestly how expensive can that truly be? But it is cause its not flight people frequent - its not like they have tons of airports and tons of flights to get you there. If you have frequent flier miles you can transfer to Tommy, a buddy who might be a flight attendant or captain who can hook it up with a few free or discounted tickets, or you yourself just wanna pay the airfare for one of these guys - give me a shout. We can't do any of this if we can't get there.

MONEY - the climbs themselves are pretty costly, and there are always unforeseen costs - travel, food, lodging - before and after the climb. We want the safest possible round trip for these guys as we can, so being able to make sure their bellies are full and they are able to stay in safe and clean lodging is a must. Please know that when you donate $$ to MTJMtns you are giving to people with a passion for what they are doing and commitment to cystic fibrosis that I have never seen. You can be assured that they will be thoughtful and respectful stewards of the money donated and will use it only if absolutely necessary. You won't see them dining at 5 star restraunts or staying at 5 diamond resorts. Hell, getting Tommy to sleep OUTSIDE of his van usually takes an act of Congress (which by the looks of how things are shaping up lately, is gonna be an even loftier task). Trust me when I tell you if Tommy could drive to Kilimanjaro and sleep in his van, he likely would.

LIKE/SHARE/RT/REVINE/ETC - get connected with MTJMe on Facebook, Twitter, Vine, Instagram and whatever else Tommy has gotten them on. Share the updates and news with your friends and encourage them to step up and support them. Post about them to your followers and ask them to do the same. More Than Just Miles started as a grassroots campaign and still uses that following to reach most of the supporters we have. We love likes and shares and such so hit em up and help em out!

I am excited to work with these guys, and you'll likely see me doing all of the above and reaching out and begging for support all over the world in the near future (if u haven't already noticed that). I am already so proud of what they have accomplished and am even prouder to be able to call someone like Tommy a friend. I have some great friends, family and supporters of my own and I hope you guys will join me in what I have deemed the "second chapter" if you will, of this transplant journey. We can refer to it as "The Aftermath" - in which Erin has recovered and been set loose on the world. You didn't know it, but this is what you got yourselves into last year when you came on this journey with me. I hope you stick around for this new leg and continue to support me as you have. I love you all and covet your support. It has made the biggest difference in my life, and now I am trying to focus it towards making a difference for others. A little pay-it-forward-action if you will.

So please, check this group out. Links are below. And enjoy this little video one of Tommy's buddies  helped make for us to help spread the word.

Twitter: @morthanjstmiles
YouTube: More Than Just Miles
Instagram: MTJME


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