there are some moments in life when words can’t suffice and all you can do is cry. i know my exhaustion played into the amount of tears i shed saturday night, but how could i not be emotional after finding out that $436,709.61 was raised for the patients and families in the north carolina children’s hospital?

this is my third year dancing and being involved on a unc dance marathon committee and it’s an experience i wouldn’t trade for the world. honestly, i’m already looking forward to getting the ball rolling with the 2012 marathon!

crazy, i know, but you get a little crazy when it comes to stuff you’re passionate about.

i’m not going to lie, standing for 24 hours is hard. you get tired, you get hungry, you experience exhaustion, but what is that compared to the family of a child in the north carolina children’s hospital? these parents and family members are up at all hours of the night alongside their children with their doctors and nurses. how much more exhausting is that? the last hour of the marathon is dedicated to the families and children who are patients in the hospital. these families are so inspiring that i literally feel no pain in my body when they take the stage.

i have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more  hurt, only more love.
-mother teresa


dance marathon has had me since day one when i heard about it at fall fest my freshman year. dancing? to help kids? i love dancing and kids — sign me up!

i had no idea that signing up to dance at fall fest in 2008 would lead to me becoming a sub-chair for a committee today.

there is something about this organization — the people involved, the people we help — that just enamors me. there is so much passion and drive involved with unc dance marathon that leads me to be inspired regularly. every year in the last hour of the marathon, families from the nc children’s hospital come and talk to us about how we make a difference in the lives of so many people. i think it’s so easy to say “yeah, i do dance marathon and it benefits the nc children’s hospital!” — it’s different when you’re able to put a face to it and you actually know what you’re contributing.

like i said, i was a sub-chair for a committee this year. i was in charge of elementary schools for the outreach committee, which was run by a dear friend of mine, katie. outreach had a really great year all around — we had fifteen events and were able to attain so many books through book drives to put in the hospital for the kids. we even got slimed for the kids:

(yes, that’s me, and yes, that really happened)

being part of outreach, i met some awesomely wonderful people and was definitely able to raise some awareness in the community about dance marathon and who were are and what we do. there are elementary school kids out there who are knowledgeable about the children’s hospital and dance marathon, it’s incredible. needless to say, i am so proud to say i worked with outreach this year. so proud that in fact i burst into tears when the final dance marathon slide show played the slide about the year’s outreach events.

knowing that i can make a difference in the lives of families who i will never meet just astounds me. the money raised for the hospital, specifically the for the kids fund, can help a family pay their bills, put gas in their car, feed themselves.

we raised $436,709.61 — friends, that is SO much money. check out the epic reveal:

there’s so much joy that culminates at the end of the marathon — people are so happy to sit down and happy that they’ve helped people and made a difference in the lives of others. i made a difference this weekend. i took a stand for something that is important to me, that is so much bigger than me.

i challenge every unc student to participate in dance marathon. i can truly say that there is nothing i have experienced at unc yet that has made me feel more like a tarheel than watching the sun rise at kenan stadium with 1600 other students chanting “go to hell duke” while walking the track.




why do i dance? it’s for the kids. it’s always for the kids.


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