Now I was a bit torn on the best way to say Thank You to a certain list of people. After the dust has settled and the commotion has died down just a little, I wanted to take a moment to give a big giant shout out to a list of people.

I wasn’t sure if I wanted to thank everyone by name – I’m just so afraid I’ll miss someone. So many people helped Ankhjii get to this first competition. First and foremost, it meant the world to us that you were so supportive, that you were so confident in her ability to do this. Obviously it wasn’t about winning. Winning is great, but this was about the journey just as much. Getting competition ready, overcoming whatever might go on in your head, taking the stage confidently. So many people helped the process, people donated money which helped us actually get to the competition properly equipped and helped minimize stress, people offered so many words of encouragement, people helped us, offered services, etc. Some of you even bought shirts that actually had Ankhjii on them, and people came out to support her. If you look at everything that went on, it was pretty amazing!!

I tried to keep a list of who did what and when so that I could thank everyone after the show went down. I hope I did a good job, but so much happens so quickly that I might have missed some stuff.

Joe & Charisse Traband, Ricky & Nina Rivera, Chris Jagodka, DJ & Kandace Pasko, Kelly & Jon Lammi, Kelly & Butch Laderach, C.J. Winkelman, Liz Shell, Ankhjii’s Parents, Karrie Ann Davis, and Lisa Smith — Your financial contributions were so very generous. You really helped us to ensure Ankhj had all the gear and supplies she needed. We didn’t have to cut any corners, and we didn’t have to stress about paying for everything that was needed. Thanks to you, she was able to focus on her actual fitness.

Christina Cross, Cindy Holloway, and Karrie Ann Davis — You guys bought the shirts!! How cool is that? Ankhj loves it every time I wear my shirt, and she was amazed that people would actually wear a shirt with her on it. Thank you so much for buying and wearing these!

Bonni Bellner and Nick Osberger had offered up some contact information for resources. I think some other folks did too…. Unfortunately I might not have all the info here. Whether I listed you here or not, if you offered up any sort of resource, it is very much appreciated. There is so much conflicting info out there that sometimes it can be hard to sort the fact and fiction. Speaking with people who actually have experience can be a huge help.

Ricky Rivera drove all the way out from Defiance to attend the event and to take photographs. His photos can be found here on this Flickr set.

Along with Ricky we had her parents, her cousin Carrie, DJ Pasko, Karrie Ann, and Christina Cross (and little Devon) who attended the show to see all the action.

There were countless others who continually provided words of encouragement to her in person, on Facebook, etc. That encouragement meant the world to us.

I’m sure I’ve forgotten some people. Others I might not have known about (I only know about the stuff I was directly involved with). But please be assured that you all had some part in helping us reach the goal! In the very first post I made about this event, I quoted her announcement in which she said she wanted to step onstage and make herself an athlete. I’d say she has excelled at that and not only attained, but exceeded the goals she set for herself.

Thank you to each and every person who helped my wife reach her goal!