reposted from the website, story by Laura Deeley Bren

We all need it every now and then. From the outside, it may appear the current circumstances of my life could be considered stressful. I have, however, witnessed what true stress, powerlessness and anxiety feels like. In 2004, my first son Austin was born with a cogenital heart defect. Coarctation of the aorta – if you could pick a CHD that’s the one to get. As I explained to Austin recently, his “special” heart had a a kink in it. A kink like a garden hose, my newborn’s aorta being this particular garden hose. Two admissions to John Hopkins, a stay at the Children’s House at Hopkins and three surgeries later, I am blessed with a healthy, vibrant six year old.
We were fortunate. Not all families with critically ill children are as lucky.
Enough about me, let’s talk about you! How can you help send these children and their families to the beach?
It’s simple.
My friends and I are asking for your support as we run/walk/crawl the OC Half Marathon ( 13.1 miles) this April 30th.
The weekly cost to sponsor a family at the House by the Sea is $1000. Your generous support will allow 13 families ( miles 1-13) of critically ill children to enjoy a week at the beach and an opportunity to escape from the stressful routine of medical treatments and hospital visits. The .1 (the .1 mile) is just gravy!
We are all only one breath away from this being our child. No one thinks it will happen to them, to their loved ones. As you hug your children tonight, think of what your dollars can do for a family that so desperately need a break. As you contemplate your own summer vacation plans, set some money aside to send a family on what is truly a trip of a lifetime.