The Children’s National Medical Center in Washington D.C. is a wonderful place that helps make miracles happen everyday. When a child is sick and in need of serious medical attention, Children’s is there. They are the knights in shining white armor. Other hospitals turn patients away because of lack of space or lack of technology to address the needs of the sick children. At Children’s though, that is simply not the case. The doctors and nurses work tirelessly every single day to help make the lives of sick children better. They make miracles happen; simple as that.
TerpThon is a 12 hour dance marathon here at the University of Maryland in support of Children’s National Medical Center. When a child gets sick, the last thing that the family should have to worry about is their ability to pay bills. The only thing that should matter is helping make their child strong and healthy again; which is where TerpThon comes in. This student run organization raises money all of which goes directly to help Children’s make miracles happen. We raise money all year and it culminates with a 12 hour dance marathon in Cole Field House in the spring semester. The greatest part is that children who have been treated attend the event and are treated like rock stars. And they deserve every bit of the spot light. There are games and you can do pretty much anything but sit down. The last hour and a half is a neon rave party where the children get on stage, dance, sing and go crowd surfing. It’s fantastic.
This was my first year attending TerpThon and I didn’t know what to expect. I knew that it was a dance event where sitting down is frowned upon (we stand in support of the doctors and nurses and their long sometimes 12-24 hours work shifts where they do not have time to sit) and it just sounded like tons of fun in support of an amazing cause. Now if you know me, you are aware that I do not dance well. All I have in my bag are novelty moves like the sprinkler, the lawn mower, the blackjack dealer and the grind. So not too great for real dancing (yes I can actually slow dance though). So I would be lying if I didn’t say I was worried about having enough moves to dance for 12 hours…
Anyway, I urge every single one of you to become apart of a dance marathon that supports Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. It is by far the most powerful, inspirational and meaningful 12 hours of your life. Truly. I must confess that being on your feet and dancing for 12 hours was quite a challenge and that I hit “the wall” at around hour 6 but I powered through it and had the time of my life. Children who have been treated at Children’s National Medical Center are the guests of honour and the rock stars of the party. They go on stage with their families and tell their story of how they had the courage to fight back against their illness. You really feel for these children. It is an extremely emotional part, and yes I did cry a bit (which means a lot because I never cry).
It felt great to be apart of something that was so much bigger than myself, having the ability to help make a difference in a child’s life is such an indescribable and overwhelming feeling. Knowing that these kids have gone through so much, so much that I haven’t and knowing that they had the courage to pull through is so inspiring. I am so proud of every single one of them. I am so glad I participated in this event and will be getting even more involved in TerpThon in the future. We once again broke the 4th year record of most money raised in the 4th year of a new dance marathon organization! $306, 735.45 and its all FOR THE KIDS.