I was reminded today that certain decisions, encounters, meetings and events help shape our lives.  These certain moments can be crucial and profoundly change the course of our ives. 

Today I was meeting up with past employees of MS.  Some of the members were there when it was the MS Society of Victoria and some from MS Limited, but we all had one thing in common, helping people live better with MS.  It was amazing to see all these people who have touched my life in one way or another over the last 20 years of my journey with MS and how they have changed the course of my life and were very determinant in my own personal growth.

One of the people today was the woman who inspired me to start the 24 Hour Mega Swim.  Jo Fairbairn had come up with a brilliant idea to hand out scholarships to people living with MS to enable them to follow a dream.  She had come up with the idea after hosting a fundraising lunch before the 2000 Sydney Olympics.  She had raised $10,000 and decided to give out 5 – $2000 scholarships and because it was just before the Sydney Games she called them The Go For Gold Scholarships.

This moment, this program, forever changed me in that I became passionate about the scholarships and what a small amount of money could do to change someone’s life.  I not only believed it, I witnessed it.  It drove me to help her fundraise the next $10,000 and that fundraising became the 24 Hour Mega Swim.  Now with 17 swims in 4 States has raised just under $10 million, handed out 800 scholarships (now $3000) and helped fund a financial assistance program within MS.

These crucial moments with Jo profoundly changed the course of my life.  At a time when I felt that I had nothing to give because MS had robbed me of my job and my health, those moments gave me the idea and the passion to raise the money for these scholarships.

These crucial moments in our lives are precious and rare.  Today, tomorrow or next week, one of these wonderful moments may occur in your life.  You could be faced with an important decision that will make your existence and the direction that your life takes extremely important.  Grab hold of that moment.

Thank you Jo for giving me that precious moment all those years ago and giving me my passion.

“People touch our lives, if only for a moment; And yet we’re not the same, from that moment on.  The time is not important: the moment is forever.” ~ FERN BORK