Vermont in December

As we approach Christmas Day I am bombarded with the usual holiday insanity of planning, parties, gift wrapping, and festivities. So right before the busy holiday season I booked a road trip for us to the beautiful state of Vermont. There’s nothing more I live for than the quality time I spend with my family together and I wanted to make sure the 3 of us got that in before our attention wandered. We stayed at Smuggler’s Notch Resort, a ski property hailed as the #1 family resort on the east coast and unfortunately (or fortunately depending if you’re not a fan of the cold weather) there wasn’t any snow except for on the top runs of one of the mountains and on the beginner hill.

After 7 years of trying to learn how to snowboard, last year things just clicked so I was really looking forward to seeing how well I’d do this season. This was also the year I decided I’d let Sophie try skiing.

Sophie is 3.5 years old now. I started her in dance when she had just turned 2. At the time I knew she loved music and after a year of weekly classes, Sophie surprised everyone with her confidence on stage. But watching your child go barrelling down a ski hill, even the bunny hill, is something I wasn’t sure I would ever be ready for. Maybe it’s because I’m actually not the greatest on the mountain, my fear of heights or that no parent wants to see their child get hurt but I secretly hoped she’d refuse to strap on the gear and quit. Then we’d try again next year.

But apparently I’m raising one tough kid.

After a few runs with her coach Sophie figured out the magic carpet, balance and how to go down the beginner hill. In fact, she announced that she wanted to do it herself and from that moment no one could help her. By noon on her first day she was focused, confident and having a ton of fun. And she taught me an important lesson.

Sometimes I think I’m up against a challenge or an uncomfortable situation, like having to stand by helplessly and watch my child figure out a dangerous sport. But in reality, it wasn’t tough at all. In fact, had I not left Sophie to her very capable coach I might have projected my fears onto her. That day Sophie taught me that things aren’t always as they seem. Tough situations might actually be challenges where we learn something about ourselves, and our kids.

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Christine skiing

After all her hardwork, check out Christine skiing like a pro!  Remember, this is her first time skiing in a long time and she was brave enough to learn with a visual impairment due to NMO (Neuromyelitis Optica).  Note her stylin’ safety vest!

For Christine’s thoughts on her day, check out her blog, The Blind Cook.

 

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04
Mar 2011
POSTED BY Jenna
DISCUSSION 1 Comment

Keystone Day 2

The footage that was taken was on day 2 at Keystone of us skiing; it probably was not a smart choice we went 2 days in a row because our NMO (Neuromyelitis Optica) was definitely acting up. This was the first time I used my Flip camera, please bare with me with my video recording skills.

 

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04
Mar 2011
POSTED BY Erin
DISCUSSION 1 Comment

Traumatic experience

Poor Jenna almost had a traumatic experience when John and her decided to do a run together. I sat down at the bottom of the mountain with Christine – we were just talking and hanging out waiting for everyone to return.  When Jenna returned and started telling the story, I was thinking take out the camera and start recording her traumatic experience. This is going to be great for the website!  You can’t even tell she has NMO (Neuromyelitis Optica)!

 

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04
Mar 2011
POSTED BY Erin
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Colorado Ski Reunion

Every year we try to head out to Whistler, British Columbia because we love the mountains and the ski village mentality but this year we jumped at the chance to visit Erin and Eric in Frisco, Colorado at the same time that Christine and John, who flew in from Houston, Texas. We were all a little surprised that our first reunion since meeting at the Guthy-Jackson Patient Day in November would happen so soon but Erin, Christine and I have become a close team of warriors battling our disease, NMO (Neuromyelitis Optica) together.

This was the first time that Erin and I attempted to take up an old hobby since our diagnosis. I was terrified of the pain and you’ll see my first run was really like the first time again but truth be told, I was more scared of breaking a promise I made to myself a long time ago. Christine took up skiing for the very first time – now that’s courage!

I’m so blessed to have shared this experience with such an amazing support network. You’ll hear us laugh a lot (especially Erin) through our pain, our bad jokes about my butt pads, and John who was so hard core on the mountain he actually ripped the crotch right out of his board pants!

Note: Sorry about some of the bad video footage. I’m still learning how to use my Flip Camera.

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27
Feb 2011
POSTED BY Jenna
DISCUSSION 6 Comments