It has been a busy five months since I last posted on the blog. In October, some wonderful friends of ours put on a second Jerde Cup and it was amazing. Rosemary Westerhuis and Anne Clarrissimeaux were the main organizers and they did a great job putting together the tournament, which was at Hackberry Creek Country Club in Irving. They left no stoned unturned when it came to organizing it with great goody bags, cool Jerde Cup hats, and a raffle with many fun prizes, including an iPad and a Behind-the-Ropes with David Feherty, which was the chance to hang out with golf commentator David Feherty behind the ropes at any PGA Tour tournament. A friend of ours, Reggie Cusick, actually won the Behind the Ropes prize but, being a PGA professional himself and already having experienced being behind the ropes several times before, Reggie generously put the prize on the auction block and it was auctioned for $500. It was the grand finale to a beautiful day weather-wise but also one of friendship, family, fun, and a lot of goodwill. The best part though was that Paul was able to participate somewhat. Our friend, Gary Pickle, who oversees golf for RISE Adventures, brought the golf cart that Paul had been practicing with all summer so that Paul could use it while hitting on the driving range and then he played a couple of holes with his old golf buddies.
There were so many great and touching moments during the tournament but I would say the best part for me and for Paul was just seeing all of our friends and knowing that after 2 1/2 years, so many people still care and are supporting Paul and his efforts to continue to recover. And, the tournament raised a lot of money that has gone and will continue to go toward Paul's recovery for a long time. We are so thankful to have so many caring and generous people in our lives.
Around the same time as the Jerde Cup, we were blessed in another way when we were contacted by Bob Green, whose son goes to school with Buzz. He had been following the blog and had seen our last post that mentioned we were looking for a facility that has a treadmill with a harness. He didn't know of a facility but he had an even better solution. He works for a company called Associa and they have a foundation, Associa Cares, to help people in need. He told us that the foundation would donate funds to pay for the equipment with the harness, called a Biodex, that we needed. I was completely surprised and overwhelmed because this equipment is not cheap but also so happy because, as I have said, the key to Paul walking is repitition and practice. It was like a dream come true and so kind of Bob to even think of us for the donation. The one caveat was that, in order for the equipment to fit in our house, we would have to have at least 9 foot ceilings, which we did not.
However, it was also right around this time that my sister, Amy, was working with someone who had bought a house conveniently located much, much closer to most of my family, and was renovating the house with plans to put it right back in the market. Not only does the house have really tall ceilings but a perfect "workout" room for Paul's equipment. And, although we loved Lake Highlands and never planned on moving north of LBJ, it seemed like God was trying to tell us something so we put our house on the market, sold it to a young couple about to have a baby (which made me happy because I felt like I was passing on the baton), and moved into our new house Dec. 18. It was a whirlwind few months but things are now beginning to settle down. Buzz is continuing in the same school so, aside from having to wake up 30 minutes earlier so we can make the longer drive, his world hasn't changed too much.
We now have the harness but have not been using it yet as, because Paul is so tall, the vendor is readjusting some handrails that are necessary to help Paul stand up straight while he is walking. As soon as we get everything tweaked, we will be posting some photos of Paul walking with it on the blog and on both of our Facebook pages. We are going to work hard in 2011 to get more connected to the outside world and engage our friends in exactly what Paul is doing to get better. It is a complex recovery that obviously is a slow process but that will only happen if Paul continues to challenge himself, and that includes in communicating with others.
For us, 2010 ended with a bang - lots of changes but all good and all propelling our forward momentum into 2011. We are so lucky to be surrounded by so many caring, supporting, and loving people that believe in Paul and will do, it seems, anything to help us. It is amazing to experience and we are thankful every day!