There are some things in life that will stay in my memory forever. It doesn't matter how much time goes by, I will always remember my complicated Twin-twin transfusion pregnancy, multiple times going into labour and multiple times having it stopped. The fear I felt everyday and also the hope I held onto. I will always remember my delivery and the joy I felt knowing Alyssa and Jessica were alive. I will always remember our long road in the NICU, the ups, the downs, and everything in between. And of course I remember so distinctly our last day with Jessica. It is so hard letting go of the people we love. Especially little people who we really didn't have the chance to know, but the love and support we received from our family and friends will always be remembered.
When Alyssa was ready to leave the IWK, I left with the feeling of despair, loss and great sadness. We made plans for two babies, but only one was coming home. But I also left feeling love, hope and gratitude. Love and gratitude towards the people. The people who looked after our babies, and the people who looked after us. I remember a lot of the medical information but I also remember the back rubs, the listening ears, the shoulder to cry on, the birthday cake for my 30th birthday, and the footprints made for our girls. Besides the life saving duties...these little acts of kindness are so important and go a long way for families who are struggling.
It is these acts of kindness along with all the care we received at the IWK that ignited the passion for starting the IWK 5K - In Memory of Jessica. 7 years later, $130, 000 donated, that passion is still there, but there is also a strong hope that we are making a real difference to help families like ours, so when they leave the hospital, the only feelings they have are love, hope, gratitude...and relief.
The IWK 5K - In Memory of Jessica is to remember Jessica of course, but also it is to provide hope for all the survivors like Alyssa, and so many kids who have left the IWK happy and healthy.
This year the IWK 5K – In Memory of Jessica is very excited to help fund
a very special once in a lifetime project. We have committed to
raising $50,000 to the redevelopment project in the Neonatal Intensive
Care Unit (NICU). This donation will be made in memory of Jessica and a
patient room in the new space of the
NICU will be named in her honour. The NICU was the only home that
Jessica ever knew, so it only seems fitting.
This large donation is a combination of sponsor donations/promotions, registration fees, online donations, door to door canvassing, Westjet ticket sales, Wine Survivor donations etc. Every dollar helps!
You do not need to be an elite runner to take part in this event, we welcome everyone of all ages and physical abilities. Because it is for the IWK, we especially love our kids events (500m and 1K) and want it to be a whole family affair.
Please join us, along with c100 FM and Izzy's Bagels at DeWolf Park on Bedford's beautiful waterfront June 5th at 9:30 for the 7th Annual IWK 5K - In Memory of Jessica! Walk, run, skip...do it for yourself, and for all the kids who need and deserve world class care at the IWK.
Register online: https://www.events.runningroom.com/site/?raceId=12888
Online Fundraising page: www.iwk5k.kintera.org
for those who like to win great prizes!
Follow us on facebook and twitter for updates leading up to the event.