Anywhooo...I am contemplating a change. A big change.
No, not a big change like a baby...but a big change, nonetheless.
I'm thinking about volunteering with the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation as an Ambassador. There isn't a chapter, group, or ambassador in our area. When I contacted them about the nearest chapter, I found out it's in D.C. That's a really long drive, in case you were wondering. The nearest Ambassador is over an hour from us & even further from the more populated areas in Hampton Roads.
So...6 months later, I'm considering it.
Technically, my official duties as an Ambassador would definitely utilize my professional skill set. It would require being available to local families/individuals affected by mitochondrial disease to help direct them to resources and information (NOT diagnosis, treatment, or counseling). I would be required to share educational resources with groups like doctors, hospitals, or even hosting a table at local event. Organizing a local awareness event would also be on the list of things to do.
I have done all of these things in some capacity with previous jobs and they are well within my comfort level.
My concerns lie with the fact that I have a very active & energetic toddler. I can barely find time to blog. I question my ability to hunker down and organize MYSELF well enough to be an effective ambassador for UMDF. I'm hoping my upcoming trip to Blissdom 2012 conference will help me clarify some of my personal and professional goals.
My other, and probably biggest concern, is that there is a fundraising aspect to being a UMDF Ambassador. I have never been good at or comfortable with raising money. There is, thankfully, not a specific amount I would need to raise, I'd just have to do some sort of fundraising. My stomach churns thinking about it.
However, even while my stomach churns, I remind myself that Klaw's VLCAD deficiency is being managed successfully through diet and supplements. For many people with mitochondrial disease, it is progressive and degenerative. Part of me feels like I have the time (somewhere) and the resources to do this, which means, in my world, I have a moral obligation to do this.
Yes, this is a me, me, me post but it's weighing heavily on my heart and my mind. I know there are other families affected by mitochondrial disease in Hampton Roads and I love a good cause. I think I need to get this out in the universe:
Can I do this?
Can I make a difference?
Do I need to just quit stalling and put on my big girl panties?
Slightly related: I publish a #KnowAboutMito online newspaper through Paper.li, if you are interested. It updates daily with links, blog posts, & articles related to mitochondrial disease & genetics.