This week's featured Fighter #fighterfriday is Whitney! She's on a mission to change the world! Read her story below!
As a Paramedic, I thought I was strong and never needed help dealing with the difficult calls I encountered. Fast forward many years, I was wrong. After marriage, having two beautiful children, and leaving a career I loved; my world flipped upside down. I didn't know who I was. I was depressed, anxiety ridden, and diagnosed with PTSD from my EMS career. I used to be embarrassed, until I realized that there were many others like me. These things didn't define me, they were a part of my journey that God had me on. Confronting them and talking about it made me strong, not weak! Though there are still difficult days, but each day is a blessing. Through the Grace of God and my Celebrate Recovery family, I have been able to wipe off the stigma and embrace what I've been through. Since losing my Grandpa (my buddy) this past March, I am determined to live like he did. Not fearing the world and things around be, but embracing my inner strength and waking up everyday knowing one thing. I am the child of a King and NOTHING formed against me shall stand!
This week's featured fighter #fighterfriday is Anaijah! She is such a beautiful person inside and out and so inspiring! Let's encourage her to keep fighting! Read her full story 👊🏼❤️
I was in a tragic car accident when I was 7 years old. I was with my uncle and other family members and we had an accident and the vehicle landed on my air. I was air flighted to Vanderbilt hospital where I stayed a week and had to have 4 surgeries including a skin graft from my leg to my arm. The surgeries were intensive and I had to leave my arm wrapped for weeks. After I took off the wrap, there were visible scars on my arm and I started getting bullied in school about it. I had to change my social life and entire friend group which caused a shift in me. Before I made really great grades but after this happened, I wasn’t as focused on my grades. I fight every day to love myself regardless of my scars and to become the person I was created to be.❤️️
This week's featured fighter #fighterfriday in conjunction with EMT week is Chelsea! She's an EMT in Nashville and works hard every day to protect our community! Thank you for your service! Tag an EMT in this post to show your appreciation!
I became an Advanced Emt a little over a year ago after I switched my career from working in the music business for 5 years. Confucius once said, “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” I can truly say I love my job and I work the best job in the world. My Mom was a huge reason for me becoming an EMT, she was one of the first female firefighters back home before she had kids. She is a huge inspiration to the woman I am becoming. I love that my office changes on a day-to-day basis and I am apart of something bigger than myself. I serve my department with positivity because some days it can be a rough one with some of the calls.
This week's fighter #fighterfriday is Josh's brother Mitchell! He's an Army National Guard veteran and is currently a police office in the Pittsburgh area. As a police officer, he's currently fighting for positive reinforcement and to keep his communities safe. Let's encourage him today! Thank you for your service Mitchell! More of his story below!
Hello, my name is Mitchell. I am a proud husband and father to my beautiful family. I served 6 years with the Army National Guard as a Cavalry Scout. I was a deputy at the Beaver County sheriffs office for 2 years. Currently, I'm an officer for the Midland Borough Police Department as well as the Brighton Township Police Department. I have always served our country and our communities with pride. I love what I do and the communities I serve. I'm fighting to be a positive reinforcement and for a safe community.
This week's featured fighter #fridayfighter is Michele! She's an amazing person and so inspirational! Let's encourage her to keep fighting! Read her full story below.
Hey peps, my name is Michele Adams and I'm 27 years old. I'm from good ole honky tonk TN. The fight I face every day is mutual things, I was diagnosed at the age of 11 with limb girdle Muscular Dystrophy. I recently suffer from depression after losing two siblings and my father from vehicle accidents. And I got a pacemaker at the age of 24. Even tho some days it's hard to look at the bright sunshine, I still have to look at the positive of things, smile and be thankful that I'm here today. Shortly after I was diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy I was told my freshman year of high school I wouldn't be able to walk. That i would be permanently in a wheel chair. It's been 8 years since I've graduated and I'm still walking. Tho some days I want to throw that towel in Bc I have those bad days, but if it wasn't for those bad days I wouldn't be thankful for where I am today! The depression likes to come in waves, some days I like to be left alone and some days I like to cry, but it makes me appreciate those loved ones I have here today and those memories I have with the loved ones I have lost. Tho with the pacemaker was the scariest time in my life, and I feel for those children who ever have to go thru it younger than I did, it's allowed to be here longer on earth with my family. All these obstacles have shown me to never give up. To always fight for what u want, to be where u want to be. And to always appreciate and embrace the life that u have. Everyone has a obstacles in their lives, we just have a different way of showing them. Take those obstacles and do something great with them. We weren't meant to be perfect, we were meant to be unique :) from all of this I do charity work. we have a walk every year for Muscular Dystrophy that raises awareness and helps find a cure for all types of Muscular Dystrophy.
Happy #mothersdayweekend to all of you wonderful, strong moms out there! Hope you ALL feel loved and appreciated throughout the year ❤️️
In honor of yesterday's #internationalfirefightersday and our visit, this week's featured fighter #fighterfriday is the Spring Hill Fire Department! Thanks for your service and willingness to always go above and beyond the call of duty to keep us safe! It's much appreciated! Tag a firefighter in this post to express your thanks!
This week's featured fighter #fighterfriday is Colton. He's our nephew and he became a US Army ranger today! Let's congratulate him and encourage him in his daily fight for our great country!🇺🇸
This week's featured fighter #fighterfriday is Malea. She was born with bi-lateral cleft and no palate. She's had 12 surgeries and has a few more to go. You can read her full story below and find out more information about supporting her fight. Malea - you are beautiful and brave and we're so glad you shared your story with us! Keep fighting!
From Malea's mom - Malea was born with a bi-lateral cleft and no palate. She is 16 and has undergone 12 surgeries and has more to go through. The next surgery needs to be done before they can proceed with any more. Unfortunately this next surgery will cost $20,000 and the insurance will not cover this one. She needs extensive implants. She is missing 6 permanent teeth. They have moved her teeth around with braces trying to close gaps. She will loose her 2 front teeth in addition to the others that need replaced. She will need more bone graphing she is missing bone in several areas. She is being treated by a doctor in Pittsburgh, PA, Dr. Costello. I do not want her to have to go through the rest of her life with a reatiner or something like that . She has been through so much and the last surgery they had to break her face to move the face forward , which was very painful. She is an amazing girl. If you can find it in your heart to help with the funds to allow her to have this surgery, it will help her for the rest of her life. They need this surgery to be paid for in full and in advance before they can preceed with the surgery. I thank you in advance for anything you might be able to do to help. God Bless you and if you cannot financially help her, if you could please pray for her and for us as we get through this next stage in her treatment. Support the campaign here: www.gofundme.com/maleamarie
This week's featured fighter #fighterFriday is Magan. Magan's baby girl passed away shortly after birth due to micro prematurity. Let's uplift her and encourage her. You can read her full story below.
Last year on this day I found out I was pregnant with my second little blessing. I was nervous I took a test by myself, I didn't tell anyone for about a month not even her dad I was terrified to be mom again and we had just started the relationship we had going, I wasn't sure I was ready. I never truly got to be a 24/7 mom, something I've always longed for and one thing I was sure of was that she was my chance to start my family the one I always wanted. Most of you know my story already and know that didn't happen, and I've never had the courage to truly tell the real story, but I think it's time Ariyanna's real story got told. My pregnancy was seemingly normal no complications outside of my normal ones ( I've lost weight while pregnant both times). From the looks of everything I was preparing to have another happy healthy baby who I was dead set on being a boy this time. My world got rocked when I found out yet again I was having another princess.( A bless I wasnt expecting). Things all seemed but normal till one morning at 22 weeks pregnant I started having some terrible issues at work alot of things happened that day that I'm still not comfortable with confronting. I clocked out of work and rushed to Gasden I was rushed in for a sonogram and found out that I was dilated to a 4 already. I was rushed to Birmingham alone because everyone was at work and no one had any kind of clue this was going to happen. I spent the next 2 weeks in Birmingham in extreme pain, going through surgeries and procedures to keep Ariyanna and myself both alive. I was sent home from Birmingham with hopes that everything was going to be OK. Wrong the next night I woke up in the middle of the night to my water breaking and was rushed back to Gasden hospital. Where they were going to hold me 72 hours and try to stop labor.All efforts failed and I ended up with a very serious infection with high fever and was being pushed so many antibiotics I could barely even explain to you what was happening. The day after that I was in the most pain I've ever felt in my life and the doctors came in to check on me and 1pm I was in full blown labor dilated to a 9 with no other options than to have her. 2 days till my girl could have been considere to be a viable life and put on oxygen. I still couldn't lose hope I went through labor and gave birth to one of the 2 most beautiful girls in the world to me. She was absolutely beautiful breath taking and still breathing my girl was a fighter. I spent the endurance of my small time with her holding her watching her take her very first and last breath. She was taken and given a bath and brought back to us in a handmade outfit that I still keep to this day. The next part is the hardest. Kevin and I decided to transport her back home ourselves. We took our girl to the funeral home and decided to bury her beside my mother a choice that will always make my heart smile. The weeks that followed changed me as a person. I'll never truly be the same. Looking back on all it now though I can smile knowing my girl will never know how cruel this world is. From the bottom of my heart I'll always love that princess and I'll always have an angel to call mine and that's enough for me. I may talk about this too much or over explain the situation but it's a memory that I feel needs talked about an issue that makes people uncomfortable, and it shouldn't have to be. Opening up about this should be easier. Feeling lost is OK. Losing one of your children is an issue that needs a dressed for mental reasons and I want to open peoples eyes to that. Rest peacefully my princess until one day I can hold you again.
This week's featured fighter #fighterfriday is Lindsay! She's a teacher in Oklahoma and she's fighting everyday for the kids she teaches! Let's encourage her and thank her for her service. Read her story below!
Do I love teaching? (The answer is probably not what you're thinking it should be.) No. I do not love working hard day in and day out for a laughable salary. I do not love working in an education system that is scarcely supported by state legislators and state government officials. However, like all of the other amazing teachers at my school, I love fighting for the kid that has no one else to fight for them. I fight because every child deserves to have someone in their corner. I was asked one time what the biggest accomplishment of my teaching career was so far. Here was my response.
"My biggest accomplishment so far in my public school teaching career hangs on my Christmas tree each year. Last year, a student in a lower grade level, with whom I had formed a bond, chose to give me the ornament that the students in his class were giving their parents. He told his teacher that his parents “wouldn’t really appreciate it anyway,” and he wanted to “give it to someone who cares.” For him, I was that person. My biggest accomplishment isn’t winning Ponca City District Teacher of the Year. It isn’t the fact that x% of my students are at 50% or higher on their STAR test. My biggest accomplishment is that eleven-year old boy."
Kids like him are why I fight.
This week's featured fighter #fighterfriday is Megan. She is a mom to five kids, four of which were adopted from The Raining Season in Sierra Leone, a songwriter, a Rodan+Fields business owner and Donations Coordinator for The Raining season. Let's encourage this beautiful, strong woman in the fight for her family! There's more about Megan below!
Our kids spent the majority of to nearly all of their lives in an orphan care center in Sierra Leone, West Africa. The orphanage, The Covering, is funded and run by local Tennessee not for profit, The Raining Season (TRS). I first met the founder of TRS in November of 2011 and became involved in a new program they had put into place called Forever Families. At the time adoptions in Sierra Leone were closed, so in an effort to give the children living at the center the closest thing possible to a family unit TRS created this program. The program required families partnering with a child or children at the center to Skype once a week and to visit once a year to allow for the children to feel loved, wanted, and cared for. It's funny to think of now, but at one time the thought of annual trips to Africa seemed daunting. Now that seems like a walk in the park.
I committed to being a Forever Family to twin 2 year olds, Gerald & Geraldine, and was officially approved in December of 2011. We began our Skype calls in January of 2012, and in February of that same year I met my now husband on a weekend away to Asheville, North Carolina with a group of friends. I only knew a couple of the people heading east for the long weekend, and Josh was one of those that I didn't. The adoption ban lifted in between our first and second dates (gulp). We quickly knew that we were done looking as far as partners were concerned, and Josh and I dove head first into the idea of adopting the kids. He had only recently suffered several major losses in his immediate family, and a big family had become non-negotiable for him. I planned my first trip to the orphanage for July of 2012 and the week before I left to go meet the kids for the first time I learned that due to some changes in the Forever Family program the twins' older brother and sister, 6 and 5 at the time, were in need of placement as well. (All 4 siblings were relinquished to the orphanage at the same time, but were split into two groups for the Forever Family program because the twins were very sick when they first arrived and would need extra attention). Josh told me that he had experienced too much loss not to fight for a good thing, and that this was a good thing. He told me to go visit the kids without any sort of expectations and that we could talk it over when I got back.
I traveled to Sierra Leone for a week and returned knowing that we had 4 kids.
Josh and I began working on our home study for adoption approval from the US government that fall, and traveled to Sierra Leone together in January of 2013 where we were married on a beautiful beach with the kids by our side. We returned to the states and finished what was needed for initial approval. I traveled back to Sierra Leone in September of 2013 and began our process in country. I ended up spending a total of 2 months in country that winter - 3 trips that had me there for some amount of time in every month from September 2013 - January 2014. Those months were some of the hardest of my life. They were a hard-on-the-heart combination of beautiful (meeting our children's birth family, including their father and one of their older siblings) and brutal (endless red-tape, dead ends, and having to leave our kids behind over and over again). We hired 3 attorney's in Sierra Leone and spent 11 months just trying to get through court. We were denied final approval by the US government due to "insufficient documentation" even thought I submitted and received confirmation that they received said documentation twice (they actually received this information 8 times because I had to submit it separately for each child and did so 2 times). We hired an immigration attorney here in the states to help us fight this denial and ended up filing humanitarian parole petitions for each of our children due to the devastating Ebola outbreak that began ravaging their country while we fought to get them out. Our second attorney left the country for safety during the outbreak, and the second judge to hear our second petition would not speak to anyone but that attorney and would only do so in his chambers. With our attorney out of the country our hands were tied yet again.
A combination of our humanitarian parole petitions, our immigration attorney's determination, and the pushing of some helpful state Senators caught the attention of the State Department. While our humanitarian parole petitions were not approved, the State Department did go back and approve our I600's, which had previously been denied. An extremely helpful employee made sure to finalize the approval on Christmas Eve so that she could give it to us as a Christmas gift. We were finally able to hire a third attorney in country and he was able to obtain permission to travel with the children under the guardianship that our initial court appointment had granted us. The US Embassy worked quickly to grant our kids their visas for travel, and my husband and my mom finally left to go pick up the kids on February 24th, returning on February 26th of 2015.
They were and are worth every single bit of it.
For more information, visit therainingseason.org.
This week's featured fighters #fighterFriday is the Gilbert family. Let's encourage them to keep choosing faith over fear in their fight against colon cancer. March is Colon Cancer Awareness month. Read their full story below.
My husband, and high school sweetheart, Chad was diagnosed with Stage 2 Colorectal cancer in 2014 at the age of 41. Colonoscopies are encouraged at age 50; however that age needs to be lowered. He was clear for a year and now is back in his liver. We currently found out that it also has metastasized to his lung. We are driving to Atlanta for treatment. We have an 8 year old son. Our community and church is praying for a miracle. We believe in prayer!
This week we decided to do something a little different for our featured fighter #fighterfridaypost! We want to engage with EVERY person reading this and want to encourage YOU in YOUR fight! Comment below what you're fighting and tag other everyday fighters that need encouragement and want to share their story! This movement is about you!
Today's featured fighter #fighterfriday is Jon! He is fighting kidney disease and needs a kidney! Let's encourage him and share this post to find him a kidney! We believe in you Jon! Keep your head up and keep fighting!! Read more about his story below!
I am O+ and 33yrs old. Some of you may know that I have struggled with kidney disease since I was born. I have undergone 17 surgeries and did peritoneal dialysis for 5 yrs. Fortunately, when I was 10, I received a kidney which lasted 20 yrs, but has since rejected placing me back on dialysis for 2 yrs now.
I receive regular dialysis treatments three times a week for four hours at a time and this helps keep me alive, but I also have very strict dietary and fluid restrictions. A transplant would offer me more freedom and the ability to live a longer, healthier, more normal life. A transplant would also give me more time to do the fun things I enjoy most, like spending time with my family and friends.
However, finding a kidney for a transplant is not easy. Just ask the 100,000+ people on the waiting list for a deceased donor kidney like me. Time is not on my side. Some wait for years; many die while waiting. The average wait time is five years or more for a kidney from a deceased donor. However, there is another option: receiving a kidney from a living donor.
Asking a family member or a friend to consider donating a kidney to me is difficult, but it greatly improves my chances of getting a transplant. A living kidney donation typically lasts longer and has better function.
You might not know a lot about living donation - I know I didn’t before kidney disease affected my life. Understandably, some people are afraid about the surgery and what living with one kidney will mean for them. Here’s some basic information about kidney donation:
You only need one kidney to live a healthy, long life.
Most donor surgery is done laparoscopically, meaning through tiny incisions.
The recuperation period is usually fairly quick, generally two weeks.
The cost of your evaluation and surgery will be covered by my insurance. The hospital can give you extensive information on this.
You will have a separate team of healthcare professionals to evaluate you as a living donor. Their job is to help you understand the risks and benefits and look out for YOUR best interests.
You can also learn more about living donation on the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) website: www.kidney.org/livingdonation or by contacting the NKF’s free, confidential helpline at 855.NKF.CARES (855.653.2273) or firstname.lastname@example.org. If you want to talk to someone who’s already donated a kidney, NKF can also help.
Thank you for taking the time to read my story. If donating a kidney to me is something you would like to consider, I would be happy to tell you more about my story and explore the process of determining if you are a match for me. You can also contact my transplant center directly at Starzl Transplantation Institute - UPMC Transplant Services Pittsburgh, Pa. Phone: 412-647-5800. However, I know living donation may not be right for everyone — but you can still help! Consider being an organ donor after death and also, help me by sharing my story with everyone you know. At the very least, I want to bring awareness to kidney disease and living donation. I am hopeful my efforts will help me receive a kidney sooner and encourage others to consider helping the many people on the waiting list.
This week's fighter #fighterfriday is Cheyanne! She had major complications as a baby and she will have scars to last a lifetime from those complications. Her story is below! Let's uplift Cheyanne and encourage her to keep sharing her story!
Just shy of 20 years ago, no one in my family knew what the outcome would be. My family waited patiently forever to find out. I was born two months early. Before this actual day, the doctors told my mom that something was very abnormal with her pregnancy and baby. Her doctors recommended her to go somewhere, as in Birmingham, to see what was going on. They had pointed out some complications, but didn't know exactly what it was. After all the news she had received, she decided to go home and do some research on the internet to try and help her have a better understanding of what the problem may be. When I was finally born, it was diagnosed that I had a Teratoma Tumor attached at the neck. They had to do an emergency C-Section on my mom and while doing so, the doctors left me connected by the umbilical cord until they found me an airway, so that I could breathe on my own. This procedure is called the exit procedure. This procedure was not one that the doctors had done in the past or came up with themselves. It was one that my mom had found off the internet in some type of article when doing research. While trying to find me an airway, if the doctors did not find one within 60 minutes, they were going to give up and that be the end. Luckily, God saw a purpose and chose to let me experience this fragile thing called life. The doctors found an airway at 55 minutes....FIVE minutes before calling it quits. Afterwards, they transferred me to Children's Hospital in Birmingham. I have multiple of nerves and arteries damaged in my neck, a paralyzed vocal cord, only half of a thyroid and more that could be listed on and on. I have had so many surgeries...too many to even count on both hands. I have had a trach and two feeding tubes. I stayed in the hospital weeks and weeks at a time that it pretty much became my "home". When I was 5, they removed the trach. During this surgery, the doctors had to take out about 2 inches off the trachea and took one of my ribs and grafted it onto my trachea. No one thought that I could make it and be as strong as I am today, but I have proved so many people wrong. No one knew if my mother would be able to be the same because of the surgery procedure that was performed and being left cut open, along with a huge amount of blood loss. Everyone wanted me to be treated as "special", but my ever so strong, outstanding mother let me be a normal child. A child that no one would have ever thought I would have become. My journey has been very rocky. There have been some extremely low spots and some extremely high ones. I do not know how my mom stayed strong for the both of us, but what a blessing she is to me. God seeks a purpose for everyone in life. Some may not know what their purpose in life is, but you have one. Miracles do happen. I believe in them strongly...not just because this is my story, but there's plenty of other miracles out in the world with a story to share also. Next time you question yourself on why you are here on this earth or you do not think there's a purpose for you, there is. Believe me, I have questioned myself the same thing and I am always quickly reminded. Everyone may be a little different or look a little different due to having scars, but before you truly know someone down to their core, make sure you know the back bone of their life. Make sure you have walked a mile in their shoes. Life is very fragile and is something that I am forever grateful to experience. Everyone has a story, this is mine. Do not judge a book by it's cover...always dive in and read in between the pages. Love yourself no matter what. Love your scars because they are beautiful and have so much meaning to them. I hope my story reaches out to young girls or people in general that have or is struggling to love themselves. For people that think they have to hide behind curtains because they are embarrassed of being different. Life is a beautiful thing, so everyone should live it to the fullest. "For I know the plans I for you", declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11 💓
This week's featured fighter #fighterfriday is Esmerlin! We met her in the Dominican Republic and were so inspired by her beauty that radiants from the inside out. Let's encourage her to keep fighting her insecurities. Her story is below.
Since two years ago I've been rejecting myself because of all stereotypes of beauty that exist. I just didn't feel right with myself for a long long time. I didn't like my face and my curly hair and I to the beauty salon to often to get my hair styled like another girls and then I used my hair to hide my face. But I said "No more" and decided to fight with my insecurity in a way... I cut all my hair to start to feel right with myself, accept myself and love me anyway.
This week's featured fighter #fighterfriday isnt just one person but rather a family! The Malone family is fighting for their baby girl Nora Rose and her fight against Trisomy 13! Let's encourage and support them and their precious baby in this fight! Nora Rose's story is below!
Nora Rose was born in October and tested positive for the genetic syndrome Trisomy 13. She's had open heart surgery and will continue to have other surgeries to correct the issues associated with Trisomy 13. You can follow her journey at Nora Rose's Journey!
Recent update on Nora Rose:
**Please pray for Nora!**
We were doing great and were going to be discharged tomorrow, but Nora's heart rate began beating at a rapid rate and blood pressure dropped, so we are back in the ICU. They did an echo of her heart and said it and the repair are still in good shape, and could be something as little as her electrolytes being imbalanced. Please pray nothing serious is going on, and that we can get this problem figured out ASAP!
This week's featured fighter is Aly! #fighterfridayAly is so inspiring and beautiful on the outside but even more so from the inside out! Let's encourage her today! Her story is below!
I have been battling Juvenile Arthritis since I was a toddler, but it wasn't diagnosed until I was 13. I have gone through numerous treatments (pills, biologics, and even chemotherapy) with hopes that I may go into remission. I have not reached that point yet, but still have hopes that someday I will! At
times, a wheelchair is my only option to get around. Although my life is not "normal," I do my best to live as normally as possible.
Everyday I fight for the ability to have a normal, teen life.
Today's fighter #fighterfriday is Jennifer! Let's empower and encourage her today! Jennifer - you're an amazingly beautiful and inspiring lady! Her story is below!
Life is always going to knock us down. There is no question about it. In my life; child sexual assault, human trafficking; a 33yr drug addiction; all that and more has knocked me down. It always left me with one question. The only question "are you going to lie here and die or are you gonna get up? So many days it felt easier to give up but when all was said and done. I always got up. I am a fighter. I won't stay down. I will always get back up.
Today's Featured Fighter is Zion!!! #fighterfridayLet his story be an inspiration to you today to get out there and fight! And let's encourage Zion as he continues to do what some may think seems impossible!
Nothing slows Zion down. Nothing.
Zion was born in China with ectrodactyly. He had one finger on each hand and one toe on each foot. At age two, he was adopted from China and from his first moments with his forever family in the States, he zoomed around and drew others to himself with an electric smile, eyes deep enough to swim in, and an attitude of love and grace that has only grown since. Zion was growing quickly and was so active that he broke his metatarsal bones in each foot numerous times—and would continue to—if something didn't change. His mom consulted with several doctors, professionals, and others then made the tough decision to amputate.
Prosthetics were next. The first ones were stiff and caused problems for a very active boy. His prosthetist, Matt Bulow, fitted him for Össur Cheetah Explorer blades and Zion "went from 0-60" in just a few minutes. This unleashed boy discovered a world of running races, jumping, throwing, and more. He kept experimenting with swimming, rock climbing, cycling, tennis, and others. Then, at a Challenged Athletes Foundation Clinic, he discovered the joy of surfing and his proficiency at it. He's frustrated he lives in a landlocked state and doesn't leave the ocean when he gets to visit. While playing Wheelchair Basketball, officials with a Quad Rugby team invited him to try their sport because of his passion, energy, and aggressiveness on the court. He's playing both sports this year.
Zion's desire to represent the United States in the Paralympics has only grown with relationships and encouragement from others he's met through CAF. At age ten, he is concentrating on gaining strength, agility, and overall fitness. He's also figuring out which sport he excels at most. He has a full competition schedule for 2017 including wheelchair basketball, quad rugby, road races (including the Rock and Roll Nashville 5K and SDTC), and longs to compete at the Endeavor Games.
This week's Featured Fighter is Vanessa! #fighterfriday She is battling depression and anxiety! Let's encourage her in her fight! You can read more about her story below!
Vanessa- Thanks so much for sharing your story with us! Never forget you are important, beautiful, needed and loved! Keep your head up and keep fighting!
I was sexually, mentally, physically and emotionally abused as a child by a family member. It started on my 10th birthday & ended when I was a freshman in high school. When I finally decided to tell someone, I recieved a lot of help. But of course, things got worse before they got better. My school at the time kept calling me names & bullied me about my abuse & blamed me for the abuse. It was really hard for me to deal with because I was still fighting with myself. I didn't know if the abuse was my fault or not & to have these people blame me, it made me fall apart. There were hate pages of me all over social media so that's when I decided to end it all. I no longer wanted to be alive. I swallowed some pills & I was at the verge of dying. I was taken to the hospital immediately. I was hospitalized at Vanderbilts psychiatric hospital for a week. It made me realize so much about life. I didn't know that being gone would hurt so many people. To this day, I still battle with depression, anxiety, self harm, & suicidal thoughts. But I've realized my worth & I just want my story to inspire others. Thank you for reading this!
Hello everyone! Meet our 1st Featured Fighter Tony from Carmichaels, PA👊🏼💥❤️ #fighterfriday
Tony is Brynn Marie's brother and was the inspiration behind F2F. He's currently fighting round 2 of testicular cancer! Let's encourage him to keep fighting for a TKO👊🏼💥 We love you Tony!
HOW YOU CAN SUPPORT TONY'S FIGHT❤️️
You can help by sharing this post, showing some love in the comments below and checking out his GoFundMe page https://www.gofundme.com/teamtonythefighter 🤗❤️️#tonythefighter — in Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.