Since this is my first blog I wanted to make it special. What better topic for my first blog than the power of social media and KD.
I’m a senior in high school, about to be 18, and finally leaping out into the world of “Adulthood” (by the way guys, not as fun as we made it out to be when we were 12). This is the point in life where I need to decide my future. There are so many things I can choose to do. While this is all very exciting, it is equally nerve racking. What if I pick the wrong thing? What if I choose something I’m not good at? What if I don’t love to do what I chose? Those are all questions that go through my mind as I’m wondering where God is going to take me in this new journey of my life. I’ve thought about enrolling in culinary school, after all, I’m a pretty good cook. I would enjoy being a chef or owning my own restaurant. What about journalism? I’ve always had a love for writing. I’m amazed by how people can be inspired through stories and words. Ultimately, whatever I choose to do, I want to make a difference in this life. To do something that will inspire people. I want people to understand that despite obstacles and difficulties, they can still achieve their dreams. No circumstance can overcome the will to make a difference.
For me, my circumstance is Cystic Fibrosis (CF)…..
CF has radically influenced my life. It has shaped me into the person I am today. I have learned in a very real and personal way how precious and valuable life is. I have experienced difficult times, uncertain times, and times when I want to give up. My faith teaches me that it’s times like these, in the midst of weakness, when God really shows out. The pain and hard times can be used as fuel to persevere and fight. From the darkest times, beautiful moments emerge. Life is precious and never to be taken for granted. Coming to terms with these truths, I decided to take the fight to CF. I decided to raise as much money as possible. I decided to work hard to find a cure. I would do this for those who have lost the fight, for my friends, and the 30,000 others in the United States and around the world who are still fighting. Those who live daily with CF. For those who know what it is like to take over 48+ pills a day, do over 2 hours of treatments, and consume over 3,000 calories a day to maintain body weight. The bitter reality is that we can do everything the doctors require, but CF remains chronic. There is no cure. BUT….I believe together we can make a difference!
So…..what does this have to do with social media and KD?
Deciding to fight back, I began to think of ways one girl, from a small town in Texas, could make a difference. About mid-February of 2014, Kevin Durant released a Nike shoe dedicated to his Aunt Pearl who battled breast cancer. I saw how much awareness and support it gained and immediately I thought about releasing a shoe for Cystic Fibrosis. How could I make that happen? I tried a couple of different ways, but they just didn’t work out. Then, about a month ago, a very close friend of our family decided to bring my idea to Facebook. We were thinking it might attract 100 shares. Of course anything beyond that would amazing. We never really imagined Kevin Durant would see it. Then, literally in seconds, the amount of likes and shares soared past 100. The post got over 250,000 shares in just 3 days! I couldn’t believe it. Messages poured in from people all over the world. They wanted to know how they could help. Some have CF. Some know or have lost someone special in their life that suffered from CF. The stories were unbelievable. The love and support meant more to me than anyone could possibly imagine. Three nights into the FB post, while I was laying in my hospital bed watching TV, my cell phone started blowing up. I had messages from my friends and family that read “KD SAW YOUR POST!” “BROOKE, IT MADE IT’S WAY TO KD!”. My first thought… There is no way! It had only been 3 days and he’s such a busy guy. There is no way he would have seen it. When I checked it out for myself, sure enough it was real. He saw my story. But not only did he see my story, he directed a response back to me! On Facebook and Instagram he posted a picture holding up a pair of his shoes saying “Hey Brooke – I’m wearing these shoes tonight and will sign and send them to you after the game. You’re an inspiration! Keep up the fight against CF!!” Of course, being the huge KD fan I am, my first reaction was to freak out. Kevin Durant, one of the greatest basketball players in the NBA knows who I am. He saw my post and he reached out to me. Who wouldn’t be excited about that?! Some people commented saying “That’s not what she was asking for…” or “She asked to collaborate with you to design a shoe…” Indeed, my idea was to collaborate with him to design a shoe, but the goal was to bring attention to CF. What he did made my idea come true. It was never about the shoes, it was about greater awareness and education of CF. KD’s actions resulted in hundreds of thousands of people all over the world hearing, reading, or seeing the letters “CF”. That’s all I ever wanted, and he did it! Make no mistake, this is not the end of the fight, only the beginning. I have so much more to do. I will not stop until we find a cure. This is only round one of the fight and I am very grateful KD took time to be involved.
I want to thank those who liked, shared, commented, and supported my story. Each of you have a special place in my heart. Thank you for being a part of this journey. I can’t wait to see where it takes us. Let’s continue together in hope and joy, looking eagerly for what’s around the next curve. 🙂
Til’ next time…..