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What started out as a site to update on our daughter's cancer has thankfully grown into a site to update on our beautiful family of four. Enjoy our journey...

Monday, April 30, 2007

one evening in time...a lifetime of memories

I am at a loss for words. Yesterday was amazing, overwhelming, indescribable, touching, emotional, and fun!

The day started with people gathering in Humphrey to start the Poker Run. I didn’t know how many cars, trucks, and bikes to expect…but my expectations were far exceeded! They registered over 350 poker tickets. The stops were in Newman Grove, Albion, Genoa, Monroe and Columbus. For those of you who are familiar with those towns…imagine 300 motorcycles lined up on the streets! It was an amazing site to see. Chad and I did not go on the run, but we did go to the starting point to see them all gathered, it was unreal!

As the riders finished they rolled into the Legion in Columbus. Some started to arrive as early as 3:00! It was just amazing, the entire day. People came to eat, be entertained, visit, and show support for Charli – and they did it in style! There were raffles throughout the night, and the evening finished with an auction of several donated prizes…ranging from a stuffed John Deere dog that went for $50 to a signed volleyball (by the 2006 National Championship Volleyball Team, the Nebraska Huskers!) for over $600.

I did my best to raise awareness to neuroblastoma and childhood cancer. I know that I could have done so much better…but did not expect people to just sit and listen as well as they did. I thought I would be kind of “background noise” and wanted to keep it brief. I think before I got my second sentence out the room was totally silent. I started to break down a few times, but knew I had to finish it. What I had to say and what I needed to share was too important to back out of. I was able to share with everyone a little background of childhood cancer and some information about neuroblastoma. I was also able to let people know a little about what Charli did to show us that she was sick. I gave thanks to the many people who helped make the night possible, probably leaving out twice as many people as I thanked. As I left the stage I lost it. I was looking to walk straight back to the back of the room and find a place to just be alone to gather myself…and there were people everywhere!!! (which was a great thing!). I met my dad in the hallway and just lost it. Somehow my dad just has that effect on me, he can just stand there and be strong and let me fall apart – that’s what daddies are for I guess!! I feel terrible because Chad had to come find me, I should have went straight to him. I just wanted to get away though.

There were some grandparents there of a 4 year old little girl who had NB (neuroblastoma) and she told them to tell Charli that “God will heal you, just like he healed me”. I was so touched.

The entire evening was just exhausting…I couldn’t even lift my head off of the pillow this morning!

I didn’t get any pictures (terrible I KNOW) but I know that others did and have sent or will send them to me so I can post them.

Thank you to all of you who came to the event, planned, organized, and orchestrated the entire day – we will never for get everything that was done for us. Walking around the room and seeing all the familiar faces was touching…walking around the room and seeing all the unfamiliar faces was amazing.

This world is an amazing place and 700 people showed us that last night. Our life will be forever changed because of this single event.

GOD BLESS.

6 comments:

AndreaChad said...

Brenda and Chad:
Sunday was a great time and you did a great job of helping others see how terrible this beast is and that there is really not much being done to stop it! You should be an inspiration to NB families all over the world simply b/c you are doing so much to raise awareness! It was great to spend some time with you both and Charli too! We hope to see you again soon!
xoxo

Anonymous said...

Hi Preister's! I am so happy to have been able to make it to the benefit for Charli and had a wonderful time. It went off without a hitch! What a great turnout you had and you could not have asked for a better day. Brenda-you're speech was was perfect and I am not certain there was a dry eye in the place afterwards. You got the word out about NB and did it gracefully. Charli is beautiful and what a great smile she has! I am proudly driving around with my NB awareness magnent on my car. Take care and keep in touch! -Courtney

Anonymous said...

BRENDA CHAD N CHARLI...IM GLAD THE BENEFIT WENT SO WELL!! I WISH WE COULD HAVE STAYED AROUND 4 THE MEAL AND RAFFLE,BUT AT LEAST WE GOT 2 HANG OUT WITH YOU ALL ON FRIDAY N SATURDAY!!YOU AND CHAD ARE SUCH GREAT PARENTS N STRONG PEOPLE-I HOPE WE AS WELL AS OTHERS CAN LEARN FROM YOU 2(YOUR BOTH TRUELY AMAZING)!!!PS.THANKS 4 SHARING YOUR SPEECH WITH US SATURDAY-IT BROUGHT TEARS 2 MY EYES-BUT I HELD IT BACK!!! WE LOVE YOU PREISTER'S -X0 X0 X0!!!JEN N JUSTIN N LIL WIDHALM

Cindy said...

So glad the benefit was such a success! Many hugs, Cindy and Mia

Anonymous said...

Hi guys We had such a good time at the benefit for Charli. It was a great turn out. And Brenda that was a wonderfull speach you gave it touched so many hearts. Charli looks like she is doing good. Hope to see you soon. Take care of that baby girl.
Sarah Bernt(Gronenthal)

Sadie said...

i am so proud of all of you. brenda, you're such a strong person. you and chad and charli are always in my heart.

p.s. i have that check from my mom for the shirts, if you still have the three for us, you'll be receiving that by the end of the week. sorry it's not more.

i love you.