Yay! The 2016 MDA Muscle Walk of North Central Wisconsin was practically in our backyard this year on Saturday October 1. Yes, that is right, the very first Muscle Walk held in Wausau! How exciting. This was the fourth Muscle Walk that Team Action 4 Ashton was able to participate in. This year we also had the smallest Action 4 Ashton team, just our family of five plus two.
We are so grateful that Suzanne Zellner, MDA Summer Camp Nurse Extraordinaire was able to join our team again this year and drove all the way from Green Bay to walk with us. It just so happened that Ashton and Suzanne were both wearing matching I ♥ MDA Summer Camp shirts.
It was a real joy to have Sydney’s friend Lorelie join us this year too. Lorelie was dropped off at our house in the morning, before we left for the walk Sydney, her and Emma painted their nails lime green, the color for muscular dystrophy awareness. Emma left early with Ken and made a team poster. When the rest of us got there Sydney and Lorelie made a team poster too and carried it during the walk.
New for 2016 was a group balloon release during the walk. Team Action 4 Ashton has never been part of a balloon release before, it was very touching and kind of neat. Marathon Park is very scenic and woodsy like for being right in the city. Ashton especially loved stopping at the markers and learning about the different tree species in the park. Ashton was excited that a friend of his, Jared from Rosholt, was also at the Muscle Walk. They met earlier in the year during the Marathon County Special Education Track and Field meet, then saw each other at Marathon County Special Education Summer Day Camp and were in the same cabin at at MDA Summer Camp.
It was a lovely morning and though it started raining when we left to get there the rain held off for the walk. The most profound part of the day was right from Ashton’s heart. On the way to muscle walk Ashton tells Sydney, Lorelie and I “We never had a tornado here at this house and we never had a fire so we are living the good life, that is what you call it when nothing bad ever happens to you, living the good life.” Hmm, having a child with a severe life limiting illness really is the epitome of truly bitter-sweet. I am so very proud of Ashton and his optimistic way of looking at life. At only 10 years old he has been realizing that he tires more easily and his muscles are weakening over time a few years now yet he is a pretty happy boy who always has something funny to say and is busy making plans for the future. I on the other hand sometimes struggle with thinking the glass is half full with Duchenne instead of being half empty. And when Ashton says things like this it just is really difficult to fight the tears.