Back in January I was invited to speak at the Your Weight Matters convention in Washington D.C. with Dawn. I said yes and decided I would worry about the logistics of it later. Well later finally came last week and it was then time to worry. I had only flown twice in my life and Callie had never been on a plane. The thought of flying was giving me some serious anxiety. I was also very nervous about speaking in front of a large group of people.
Last Wednesday we took off to D.C. The flight went really well. Callie loved it. She was shouting with excitement during take-off and landing. We got to D.C. and hopped on the Metro. We don't ride the subway in Atlanta, so this was a new experience for us. It was convenient and actually pretty fun. The first night that we were there we went to Arlington Cemetery and were fortunate enough to see the changing of the guards at the Tomb of the Unknown soldier. That was truly incredible to see. We also went to the White House. My feet were killing and so were Callie's so we went back to the hotel after those two stops. The next day we went to the Gaylord hotel, which is where the convention was taking place. This hotel was beautiful. We got settled in there and went to the Smithsonian Air and Space and Natural History museums. Kevin loved the Air and Space museum and Callie's favorite was the Natural History museum. I enjoyed both of them and loved walking around the city. We also went to the Capitol building. On Friday, we spent all day at the Gaylord. We walked around the exhibition hall and I got to speak with a lot of really sweet people. Dawn got there on Friday and we decided we were going to go to the Costume Party later that night. The theme was "America". We had nothing to wear so we found this store that sold all things American. We got a t-shirt, bow, and some seriously cool knee high socks. The party was a ton of fun. They had delicious food and a fun photo booth, which Dawn and I took advantage of....several times.
Saturday was the BIG day. We had a full house listening to us speak. I was nervous until I hit the stage. Looking out and seeing all of the sweet faces made me feel so comfortable. Like I was just chatting with friends I had known my whole life. Dawn and I had a fantastic time sharing out story with everyone. We even got a standing ovation, which was awesome!!! Later that night we all went out for Mexican food and then took a spin on the Ferris wheel. I wasn't a big fan of that, but Callie sure enjoyed it.
What a memorable few days we had in D.C. It was such an honor to be invited to speak that this convention. I was surrounded by some very inspiring, brave men and women. I came home with a feeling of empowerment, Kevin came home with some new funny t-shirts and Callie came home with 8 new stuffed animals. All in all, we had a great time!