I've entered my beard in the Fifth Annual Vermont Beardies contest to benefit Make-A-Wish Vermont! The top 25 fundraisers will be invited to the finals. Help me earn the coveted title of "Best Beard in Vermont" as I turn my whiskers into wishes!
All funds raised will go towards granting wishes for children fighting life-threatening illness here in Vermont.
Donate or enter your beard into the competition at VermontBeardies.com!
In December 2017, our oldest daughter Elizabeth was hospitalized just before Christmas, fighting for her life against an unknown illneess. Due to the amazing effort and care of our pediatrician, she was diagnosed with Addison's Disease, an extremely rare autoimmune disease that destroys the adrenal glands. She was also diagnosed with Hashimoto's Disease which destroyed her thyroid gland. Elizabeth's body does not produce the hormones to get out of bed in the morning, to fight against the common cold, or to handle the stress of exams. She is steroid dependent daily and must carry an injection with her at all times as if she suffered a medical crisis she would need an injection immediately before her organs shut down. She misses weeks at a time from school and last year she missed competing in the Indoor Track State Championship, despite being ranked number 2 in the state for weight throw. She is under the amazing care of Boston Children's Hospital.
Amazingly strong and resilient, Elizabeth's diagnosis at the age of 14 was a lot for her to adjust to, both physically and mentally. She is now a junior in high school, a 3 sport varsity athlete, an honor roll student and a hero to us every day. As her most prized shirt says "I May Have Addison's, but Addison's Doesn't Have Me."
In August 2019, Elizabeth was granted her wish to celebrate her Sweet 16 at Disney World in Orlando, Florida. We had an opportunity to create amazing family memories and, most importantly, Elizabeth was able to feel like a normal teenage girl again, even getting the opportunity to waltz with the Beast on her birthday.
As a way of showing our appreciation, we decided to enter my beard into the Vermont Beardies fundraiser for Make-A-Wish. We want to do what we can to help give back to Make-A-Wish, as there is no way we could ever properly thank them for the difference they made in our lives. Please consider supporting our efforts by making a donation to Make-A-Wish.