I want to write a sincere thank you to the many individuals that came together to support my family this weekend.
Life with CF is difficult, but the amount of love and support I felt this weekend was breathtaking. I missed my sister so much. She was always so lively during these events, though she didn't always feel well. It still doesn't feel like she's gone forever.
I have no idea what I would do without the support of my friends and family. Through everything, this support reminds me there is good in this world; it reminds me why I'm so grateful to be alive. It reminds me that there might even be a perk to life with CF.
I think a lot about altruism. Is it possible in humans? In animals? Is it possible to be completely selfless; to do something for absolutely no benefit to yourself? Parts of me say no, even donating money or time triggers the reward parts of the brain and produce serotonin, meaning that a benefit is feeling better about ourselves.
But then I look at this support. I look at the love I have around me. I used to think people pitied me and gave me the benefit of the doubt because I had CF. When I was younger, I always wondered if people were less likely to get angry with me because I dealt with this. As I get older, it seems clear to me that people don't love me because of my CF, they love me despite my CF.
I'm open about my CF because if I want people to know my heart, I want to be open and transparent about the biggest part of my life. This weekend felt like a celebration for my sister. It felt exactly as she would've wanted for me. She would've wanted me to be enjoying myself and celebrating with the people that I love the most, that love me dearly, and that care and miss her so much.
I am so incredibly overwhelmed with emotion. I miss my sister. There is nothing I want more than to see her smiling or to tease her about something. This weekend allowed my mind a respite, but Sunday evening continues to be the hardest part of the weekend. We accomplished another first without her, but the path ahead continues to appear unexplored. I still feel as though I'm navigating an impossible battle.
I wish I knew how to repay the support system I have. I hope all of you know how dearly I love you. As hard as this battle is, this weekend proves to me that there are so many people in my corner and that I'll be okay.
And to The Cold Boys, a special note. I know I've thanked you guys a lot for everything. But I need to do more than that right now. I lost my sister just over two months ago. I know I wasn't the only one that lost somebody important and that this grief affects everybody differently, and Lyss loved you guys so much. She considered you guys to be best friends and little brothers. Over the last five years, I've shamefully been scared of feeling like an only child after losing Lyss. Thanks to you guys, I don't feel like an only child. I sincerely consider you guys to be my brothers and I hope you all know that. I love y'all so much.
Thank you to everybody. This was all for you, Lyss.
Oh, and check out these calves. And these socks. Lyss would've loved them.
I know exactly what she would say.
"I'm fabulous and I'm famous."
We miss you so much, Sista.