A Common Thread

While in Ottawa, Kansas a few weeks ago I noticed a common thread in the catering tent.  There were moments when I would help acquaint new volunteers to the catering tent and get them started on a project such as removing labels, refilling and icing down the coolers among many other projects.  Not long after the introduction to the tent a beautiful story would usually unfold, and a common thread became evident.

I met several phenomenal volunteers who shared with me that they or a loved one had a traumatic brain injury.  One such amazing person was an aunt who shared a photo that she had on her phone.  It was a photo of her niece who is in elementary school.  You see, her niece suffered traumatic brain injury during a car accident when she was an infant.  She is wheelchair bound and does not speak, but her aunt shared that she is making wonderful developmental strides.  This amazing aunt told me her niece’s name, and I told her that I will never forget her niece’s beautiful name.  For confidentiality purposes I can’t say her name, but this amazing little girl has made a huge imprint on my heart, and I will never forget her or her aunt.

We were blessed to have another phenomenal volunteer who was accompanied by his daughter.  His daughter shared with me that he has a hard time hearing because he has had 13 surgeries to remove brain tumors, and yet there he was volunteering to build the Hill’s new home.  I learned from each of these remarkable volunteers that the only limitations we have are those that we place on ourselves.

In closing, I want to share the link to the Brain Injury Association of America website that was given to me by one of these amazing volunteers.  It is http://www.biausa.org/ and I want to say to all of you that I met, ” I will never forget you.”  Thank you from the heart for sharing your stories with me.  You’re simply amazing!