The Meneses Family: Their First MuckFest MS Experience
We had the opportunity to speak with Kim Meneses about her family’s experience at their very first MuckFest® MS event last year in Houston. Current residents of Kyle, Texas, the Meneses family made a last minute decision to participate in MuckFest MS.
Kim’s son, Nathan, heard about the event and thought it would be a cool thing to do as a family. Seventeen-year-old Nathan, who was diagnosed with MS after his 16th birthday, was confident in his ability to complete the course. However, his parents hesitated.
Expressing her concern for their son, Kim asked her husband, Sam, “What if he can’t finish it?”
“I’ll carry him on my back if I have to,” replied Sam. He was prepared to move mountains if that’s what it took to get Nathan to the finish line.
And with that the family prepared to play in the mud at MuckFest MS Houston!
On the day of the event, the Meneses family arrived at the muddy event grounds ready to take on the day. Kim and her daughter Sarah, who is also living with MS, took to the sidelines to be cheerleaders and photographers for the day. Nathan and his dad prepared for the mud and muck, but before they could get in the mud they had one little surprise for Nathan.
Eddy Bolt, a long-time family friend, came all the way from Oregon to surprise Nathan! The family has known Eddy since he was a teenager, and according to Kim, he is their unofficial adopted son and awesome big brother to Nathan and Sarah. Eddy has supported the family in their battle to end MS forever, ever since they formed their first Walk MS team. He was the first to donate and still wears the orange wristband they sent him. And now Eddy traveled all the way to Houston to run the obstacle course with the duo.
As Kim and Sarah followed the guys as spectators, they got to witness some incredible moments that capture the heart and soul of MuckFest MS.
“I became emotionally overwhelmed watching them at the first obstacle. The obstacle was the back to back mud hills; Triple Pits. It was such an awesome moment for me to watch. Several people were having trouble getting over the hills. At first I thought maybe my boys were having trouble getting over the hill, too. But, as I walked closer, I found the three of them at the top of the hill pulling people over.”
“This was a perfect example of the support the MS Community provides. When someone receives a diagnosis, it is so overwhelming. There are so many hills to climb and it takes every ounce of energy to get up and over one hill just to be immediately faced with another. It’s exhausting and difficult to navigate alone. Fortunately, we have found others in the MS Community who have helped pull us over and, in turn, we have helped pull others over these hills, too.”
For Kim, watching her MS Mafia team made her overcome with emotion and tears. She watched as the boys waited behind until everyone in their heat made it over the first obstacle before continuing onto the next one. This sort of teamwork is a constant at MuckFest MS events and represents not only the challenges that many face once diagnosed, but also reflects the support the MS community has not only through the National MS Society, but also among perfect strangers at events like MuckFest MS.
As you can imagine, all three guys completely rocked the course. Kim was so overwhelmed with pride when Nathan crossed the finish line and rang the bell that she began to cry when she hugged him. Despite Nathan being cold and tired, he finished the course on his own and kicked MS in the face!
MuckFest MS helped the Meneses family grow closer as a family. Kim said that life with two teenagers with MS is complicated and filled with double the challenges. Still, they face them and make adjustments for their kids. They avoid the heat, are flexible when it comes to their needs, and allow plenty of rest time so they can go at their own pace. And at MuckFest MS Houston, Kim got to see first-hand the amazing champions her children are as they battle MS. For her, and the rest of the family, this uplifting day will live as a treasured memory of excitement, inspiration, and liberation!
The Meneses family is extremely excited for their next MuckFest MS event in 2016.
Register now for MuckFest MS: http://muck.ly/Schedule_Blog