As some of you may know, I’ll be willing to talk about and promote information about Parkinson’s disease and my family connection until the cows come home.
I have no problem asking people to support my father and his efforts, or his friends and the people I’ve met along the way. Or participating in a walk this month in New York City for Parkinson’s.
But I’ve come to realized the idea of having my own fundraiser and asking people to support me absolutely terrifies me.
In participating in the Unity Walk in NYC, I set myself a goal of raising $1,000. I sent out some personal emails and a work email, asking people to give a few dollars to the cause.
Before I started, I told a co-worker I was worried $1,000 was too lofty of a goal and that I was scared no one would donate. But with about a month until the walk, I’m at $870 thanks mostly to donations of $25-50.
But on top of that, I’m hosting my first fundraiser on Monday, April 15 and I am seriously, beyond nervous. Everything is coming into place — fliers are out, music is booked. And a family friend who has early onset Parkinson’s is coming all the way from New Jersey for support.
But I find myself obsessively checking the Facebook event, asking myself what if only 30 people come?
I have to remind myself, most of us give back for the cause. We donate to causes that matter to us, or to things that matter to our friends. And it’s not about raising a certain dollar amount. Anything we raise during Pints for Parkinson’s and through friends’ donations is money that wasn’t there before.
April is a big and slightly exhausting month for my family. My dad’s fourth annual golf tournament is this weekend, so I’m flying down to Florida to help lug chairs and tables around and help out during the event. Then flying back and getting back to work probably more exhausted than when I left. My Mom and Dad will be heading to NYC the next weekend for the Michael J Fox Foundation Most Valuable People ceremony, and will have to miss out on my event that Monday.
But then it’s the Unity Walk with my sister, as well as all of our birthdays.
Go big or go home, I guess. And it’s all going to be worth it after all the stress. (Right?!)
Because people will come and donate, or they won’t. That’s not what matters. My friends will be there to support me if they can.
And I’ll be there to support my family and everyone I know with Parkinson’s.
What do you do to give back? What causes are most important for you?