Humanwire #GivingTuesday by Chel Wolverton

I woke up to the best news this morning on #GivingTuesday. Haineyehya's family is fully funded to receive the donations made on her behalf. Thank you. To everyone who took a moment to read about, share, and donate to this campaign - your support is what makes things like this possible. 

Now that the campaign for Haineyehya has ended, that only means there are other families out there that can use your help. Humanwire is doing just that as rapidly as they can. While most people are just starting to hear about the refugee crisis on a regular basis, there are families  who have been living in camps before 2011 and they need our help.

Humanwire can help these families directly and you see the results in photos and videos that show you just how grateful they are that someone in this world cares. Andrew has done a phenomenal job in creating this rapidly growing charity to take on the problem.

Once the money is raised, the families as assisted in getting the goods (food, heating, etc.) that the money was raised for - receipts and other documentation provided to the donors - along with direct contact with the recipients. A valuable connection that makes a mark on each person's life.

Every time we reach out, donate, make the world a little bit better - some of us feel a loss at how to help on a large scale. The world doesn't need only large scale help. Sometimes all it takes it one family at a time. It's not an all or nothing game.

It's heart. Take one step, take another, and before you know it we can make the world shine a little bit brighter for families around the world. To yell and shout about this or that on our social profiles takes little courage - it's the steps we take to rectify the problems we see in the world that makes it a better place.

On this #GivingTuesday, please take a moment to support a family on Humanwire

Meet Haineyehya and tell her #helpiscoming by Chel Wolverton

Photo taken on my birthday this year. One of the many reasons behind my inspiration to lead versus donate.

Photo taken on my birthday this year. One of the many reasons behind my inspiration to lead versus donate.

Meet Haineyehya. She's 6 years old and has my heart wrapped around her little finger. Until last night, I was unfamiliar with this young girl who left her home with her father and 4 siblings (no mention of her mother) to find a safe place to call home. Can any of us imagine leaving the only home/country we've known to make this journey as a 6 year old?

Enter Humanwire. Haineyehya and her family needed support and Andrew sought a way for himself and others to help that feels more personal. These families aren't asking for anything and we are asking FOR them - we only need to raise $1600 - which will go to pay for food, housing supplies, a heating machine and medical care for her father whom broke both his legs and cannot work currently. That's all they need to eat good meals, have better shelter and be warm.

More than 43 million people worldwide are now forcibly displaced as a result of conflict and persecution. Half of all refugees in the world are children 17 and under, most of which have lost family, home, school and friends. 

We all see the heartache and pain of people fleeing their homes because there is no hope left. "...parents puts their child on a boat when the sea is safer than the land”. Haineyehya and her family left to find a safer place and now we can help make that place a bit better. Please take a moment and give any amount that you can, in doing so, we'll help at least one of these children today.

Must Listen List - November 2015 by Chel Wolverton

Some of these might be familiar to you, I'm certain not all of them will be. If you've heard all of them then send me a note because I have a prize to send you.

This first video needs no introduction and if it does, then shame on you. Go listen. Words can't describe this one. JT will make the most lukewarm fan love him after this jaw-dropping performance with Chris Stapleton at the CMAs.

This one is pretty special to me. You'll feel all the emotion from this duo. The songwriting is phenomenal. Been a fan for a while, buy everything I can get my hands on. That speaks volumes. The direction and performance of this video is right up there with JT. It's that spankin' marvelous.

This is hands down my favorite cover of this song. That smoky, smoky voice. Adele nails it again to no one's surprise.

This isn't an official video but as one of the top 10 most played in my iTunes it had to make the list. Garden State scenes make it even more badass and heartbreaking and heartmending all in one.

Stars singing Barricade over Les Miz is pure gold. It's a perfect fit and the lyrics are amazing. "Oh how could anyone not want to rip it all apart?" The song's story isn't what it sounds like at all which intrigues me. I love songs where there could be a thousand meanings in every lyric.



What I Learned from #GoRuck Class 1006 by Chel Wolverton

This photo captures exactly my own amazement that I finished! - photo lovingly taken by C.C. Chapman

This photo captures exactly my own amazement that I finished! - photo lovingly taken by C.C. Chapman

When you first hear about rucking you may think a lot of things:

  • That's crazy.
  • Why would you do that?
  • Or my personal favorite: hey, I should try that.

If you're anything like me you go with #3. When C.C. Chapman mentioned rucking I didn't think anything of it at first but #1 and #3. It wasn't until well after last year's knee surgery and recovery that I felt I could do anything about it. In fact, I started running again before I got into rucking.

Cue the doctor's rant about running and suddenly rucking was one thing that ironically I could do that *didn't* hurt my knees so much (with taping and icing after). The weight doesn't seem to hurt my knees like the impact of running. And thus, a new addiction is born. 

After a summer 10 mile ruck I decided I'd sign up for a challenge - GoRuck Light on Halloween, the same one that C.C. did just last year. I thought I was prepared - let's say nope to that.

Queueing up for our start I was nervous and wondering what the hell I'd gotten myself into. I was a bit concerned about not being able to hear (wearing hearing aids near water is a no-no) and being helpful to my team. Then I was tapped on the shoulder by one of the best surprises of the day - C.C. had come to shadow the challenge with his camera in tow, a big smile and a warm hug. The three things that would help me throughout the day.

We got started. Right off the bat I almost quit. Almost quitting isn't quitting. Thankfully.

No complaints, it was just really tough on my knees to run with the ruck. Running I can do for short bursts still no problem, additional weight made pain shoot through both knees. It was incredibly bad.

I walked off. I walked away and the encouragement that came from all sides made me feel like I was giving up. Not in a "you're being a baby kind of giving up", but in a "please don't do this kinda giving up". I was asked if I wanted someone to take the ruck and refused repeatedly. I even remember C.C. saying don't be a hero. Heh. Boy, that man knows me well. But the team, those people - THEY made the difference. I absolutely would not have finished it if weren't for my team. No way.

Most of the day was a battle with myself. I was so introverted and in my own head, fighting myself the entire time - quitting, being tired, achy body parts, being slow, etc. - it was a tough physical battle and a tough mental one, too. I was because it took all my concentration and effort to finish this thing. I kept being encouraged to smile and while I realized at the end that being amused and goofy would have helped - I let myself get sucked into a mental trap.

During the last hill - or next to last, I can't recall for certain - I quite effectively lost it. I loathe being touched when I'm stressed or frustrated. I finally gave up my ruck for a bit because I knew I wouldn't finish without help. I knew that I had to do that - to accept help - or stop. Accepting help is another thing I struggle with. I certainly don't like asking for it from people I'm not close to.

When I took it back and when I could see Faneuil again, it was surreal. Like WTF just happened exactly? Are we really here? The awe and amazement that flooded my sense carried me back to our starting point was the most inspiring feeling, ever.

Photo by C.C. Chapman - Recognition and celebration of my finish.

Photo by C.C. Chapman - Recognition and celebration of my finish.

The moment above is gold, folks. 

That moment I realized I fucking finished. I can fucking finish. All at once I realized that I can finish, I can push myself, I can do more than I think is possible, that I am built to outlast challenges, I am mentally stronger (read: stubborn) than I thought.

While the challenge was tough physically (hardest thing I've done after giving birth), the mental battle was intriguing to me on so many levels. I learned a lot about myself and while that sounds cliché - this is one of those time I'm quite in awe of the lessons I learned from a few hours effort. Those moments don't happen often.

That hug above and earning my patch and the encouragement of my team are something that will carry me through a lot of tougher times because I know I can push limits.

What can YOU take away? Challenge yourself. You might be surprised what you learn from yourself and your abilities to face what's thrown at you.

A few friends asked me after it was over if I'd do another one and I jokingly said I'd wait to answer until after the pain subsided but the truth is I decided well before that. I think I have a lot yet to learn (especially about those mental traps and smiling) and limits to continue to break. After all, I'm limitless.


If you'd like to partner up for upcoming challenges, please let me know. I'm willing to travel/look into doing it near you! (Sounds like a group of friends are on for Spartan Fenway next year, too!)

If you want to learn more about rucking and purchase rucking gear - use this link, please. I don't benefit from it, C.C. will and it's the least I can do for all his support.

another thought on 100% honesty by Chel Wolverton

Honesty is a very expensive gift – don’t expect it from cheap people.  - Warren Buffet

Continuing the conversation on honesty here because I can't emphasize how much it means to me. I'm always blunt, always say what's on my mind (except with clients because they need a little more clear and comfortable communication). I read this quote the other day and I realized it's just another facet of why I value that honesty so much.

You have to value a relationship a great deal to give a gift that expensive. Transactional relationships such as those at a restaurants or when shopping for groceries can over time become more valuable when you develop those relationships. So do you start with blunt honesty in order to comfortably evolve the relationship to this point or just start with blunt honesty when the situation calls for it?

Saying what you need to say is a toughie when it involves emotion.

I, for one, still value honesty over momentary reassurance of lies. Because that's truly what it is....momentary before the core blows up and it's game over with irreparable damage done.